After months of excruciating negotiation and a legislative process that took over a year, President Joe Biden on Tuesday signed into law the centerpiece of his agenda, the Inflation Reduction Act, paving the way for the United States to enact its largest-ever effort to combat the climate crisis and make the biggest changes to the health care system since the Affordable Care Act.
“This law is finally delivering on a promise made to the American people decades ago, ” said Biden.
The Inflation Reduction Act, or IRA, includes nearly $370 billion in climate spending, the government’s biggest financial investment aimed at alleviating the effects of climate change through a series of new measures including tax rebates and credits for renewable energy, energy-efficient technology, and electric cars. The legislation will also punish fossil fuel companies for excess methane emissions and seek to protect vulnerable communities by funding climate resilience and pollution monitoring projects. One recent analysis estimated that the IRA could slash the country’s emissions by 40 percent by the end of the decade, in comparison to 2005 levels. But the deal contains some notable flaws, with some warning that it amounts to a “devil’s bargain” with the fossil fuels industry. For many, it’s been particularly difficult to square the funding’s goal to protect vulnerable communities from the wrath of global warming when the IRA also opens swaths of the country to drilling and pipeline deals.
REPOSTED FROM MOTHERJONES.COM – READ FULL ARTICLE HERE