WASHINGTON (July 15, 2022)—According to media reports, yesterday U.S. Senator Joe Manchin told Senate leaders that he may not support new climate and clean energy spending in a reconciliation package, effectively blocking passage through the chamber. Climate measures under discussion include investments in clean energy, vehicle electrification, industrial decarbonization and many other provisions that would accelerate U.S. progress to a cleaner, safer and more prosperous future.

Following is a statement from Dan Lashof, Director, WRI United States:

“If this is the final word, it will go down in history as yet another disastrous failure of the U.S. Congress to confront the climate crisis at the pace and scale necessary. It is a sad state of affairs that 51 members of the Senate are more focused on constructing roadblocks than building the engines of clean economic growth for the 21st century. But this deal is too important to give up on. Senators must stay at the table — all summer if necessary — and seize the opportunity to rein in price volatility, create good-quality American jobs and combat the climate crisis by rapidly transitioning to clean energy.

“Senator Manchin’s claim that the climate provisions in this package would contribute to inflation is misguided. Research shows that clean energy measures would save American households $500 annually in energy bills.

“Failure to enact a climate-smart budget package would be a devastating setback to achieving the United States’ pledge to cut emissions in half by 2030. WRI’s research shows that strong financial investments, like those under consideration in the budget reconciliation package, are essential for the U.S. to achieve that timeline.

“As wildfires burn in over 12 U.S. states and much of the country faces sweltering heat waves, the public is demanding America do more, not less, to address the climate crisis.”