Building Interregional High-Voltage Transmission Lines: America’s Most Pressing Energy Need
January 22, 2024
The United States is on track to increase its greenhouse gas emissions by about 800 million tons in 2030 at its current pace of building electricity transmission lines. That’s despite enacting the largest investment bill in clean energy and climate action in history, the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). But without the means to transmit power, most new U.S. clean energy projects will remain on the sidelines while the U.S. becomes more reliant on coal and natural gas power plants to meet increasing demand.
The Building Integrated Grids with Inter-Regional Energy Supply (BIG WIRES) Act could close this transmission gap. If passed, the bipartisan bill would reduce the risk of electrical power outages, lower carbon emissions, decrease energy costs, and improve national security.
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Author: Mary Jane Maxwell, Ph.D., is a Senior Expert at WBD and a Certified Climate Change Professional.