Shaheen-Portman Energy Efficiency Bill Included in Bipartisan Infrastructure Legislation Heading to President’s Desk

November 06, 2021

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Rob Portman (R-OH) issued the following statements after key provisions from their bipartisan Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness (ESIC) Act cleared the U.S. House of Representatives as part of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. Shaheen and Portman were lead negotiators of the bipartisan infrastructure package that passed the Senate in August. The bill now heads to President Biden’s desk for his signature.

“I’m pleased the House worked together to pass the bipartisan infrastructure deal that I helped negotiate – ensuring we deliver critical, once-in-a-generation investments in the safety and resilience of our infrastructure. The historic infrastructure package heading to President Biden’s desk also includes key provisions from my energy efficiency bill with Senator Portman, which will invest in our energy efficiency sector by reducing emissions, improving the resilience of our buildings and combating the climate crisis,” said Senator Shaheen. “Time is of the essence to prepare our economy and workers for the 21st century while safeguarding our environment. Congress took a critical step to build a more sustainable future, and I look forward to President Biden’s swift signature on this landmark legislation.” 

“With passage of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act in the House and the Senate, we are just one step away from enacting common-sense measures that will increase energy efficiency and reduce emissions across the economy,” said Senator Portman. “We need a balanced approach to protecting our environment and reducing emissions, while also safeguarding our economy and jobs – these measures accomplish just that.”

The ESIC Act will improve energy efficiency in three key sectors – buildings, industrial and the federal government. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), residential and commercial buildings accounted for about 40 percent of total U.S. energy consumption in 2018. In addition, reports from the U.S. Department of Energy have found that the federal government is the largest single energy consumer in the country. By improving energy efficiency in these three key sectors, policy experts at the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) found that when fully enacted, the ESIC Act through 2050 would save consumers more than $51 billion on their energy bills and reduce carbon emissions by 1.3 billion tons, which is the equivalent of taking nearly 280 million cars off the road for one year.  A previous study from ACEEE also estimated that their legislation would add more than 100,000 jobs to the economy.  

Provisions from the ESIC Act include: 

  • $120 million from FY 2022-2026 to fund centers that identify opportunities for optimizing energy efficiency at manufacturing and industrial facilities;  
  • A $45 million annual grant program from FY 2022-2026 to implement cost-effective building codes for efficiency and resilience; 
  • A $10 million grant program for FY 2022 at higher education institutions to establish building training and assessment centers to implement modern building technologies; 
  • A $10 million grant program for FY 2022 to invest in career training programs for students to receive certificates to build energy efficient buildings technologies; 
  • The creation of technical assessments for manufacturers to maximize energy efficiency, prevent pollution, improve water usage, conserve natural resources and more; 
  • A requirement for information-sharing between the EIA and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) related to commercial energy consumption data.

The bipartisan infrastructure package also includes several other legislative priorities of Shaheen, including the Smart Manufacturing Leadership Act, legislation that will help manufacturers improve energy efficiency, create jobs and secure a more competitive position in the marketplace. By 2040, it’s estimated it would save consumers $5 billion in energy costs and reduce carbon emissions equivalent to taking 116 million cars off the road. The bipartisan infrastructure package also included Shaheen’s Heat Efficiency through Applied Technology (HEAT) Act and the Promoting American Energy Jobs Act. Together, these bills will promote innovation, energy efficiency and economic competitiveness of American manufacturers and support the energy workforce. Shaheen added these provisions when the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources voted to advance the Energy Infrastructure Act in July.