The election of Joe Biden as America’s next President provides American voters with a radically different vision of energy policy from President Donald Trump, with a renewed focus on addressing climate change and on renewable energy
President Biden will enter the White House with a goal of setting the US on course for net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and will take the US back into the Paris climate agreement, although if the Republicans retain control of the Senate, how much of his agenda he will be able to deliver could be limited.
“With the federal government constrained, state policies will continue to be important,” said Wood MacKenzie. “The key influences shaping the US energy industry are likely to be market forces, just as they were under Barack Obama and Donald Trump. But the change of federal government will have some significant consequences.”
Wood MacKenzie vice-chair Americas Ed Crooks highlighted the boost President Biden will provide for offshore wind. “The Trump administration has slowed the process of approving offshore wind and proposed to close off a section of the US Atlantic coast from Florida to Virginia. A Biden administration will act faster to support states and companies seeking to develop offshore wind industries,” he said.
The Business Network for Offshore Wind said a Biden presidency, which will begin on 20 January 2021, “promises to usher in a renewed focus on renewable energy,” including offshore wind “and it is expected that offshore wind will experience substantial growth from projects, supply chain development, and job creation.”
The US offshore wind sector already has 30 GW in procurement commitments from east coast states. President-elect Biden has indicated he intends to provide a level playing field with tax policies for clean energy technologies and, hopefully, a multi-year extension of tax credits for all renewables projects.
Business Network for Offshore Wind chief executive Liz Burdock said, “The American electorate voted for a future that focuses on climate change solutions. President-elect Joe Biden puts offshore wind in the US on the brink of substantial growth.”
The American Wind Industry congratulated President-Elect Biden and Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris. Its chief executive Tom Kiernan said, “We look forward to collaborating with his administration and Congress as we work together to shape a cleaner and more prosperous energy future for America.
“The President-elect and his team have laid out an ambitious, comprehensive approach to energy policy that recognises renewable energy’s ability to grow America’s economy and create a cleaner environment, while keeping electricity costs low and combating the threat of climate change.
“The US wind sector and its growing workforce of over 120,000 Americans stand ready to help put that plan into action and support the Biden administration in delivering on the immense promise of renewable energy to add well-paying jobs to the US economy and reach the President-elect’s 100% target for a carbon-free America by the middle of this century.”
National Ocean Industries Association president Erik Milito said, “The promise of American energy remains constant. Our elected officials should recognise that the US offshore energy industry is an irreplaceable asset. The offshore industry provides a foundation of homegrown energy, jobs, economic opportunity, and billions of dollars of government revenue.
“America’s offshore oil and natural gas producers, wind operators and service and supply companies are already aligned to innovate and scale the innovation and technologies needed to solve energy challenges, including climate change. Together, we can pursue an offshore energy agenda that helps every American.”
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