People Powered: Building up America’s cleaner, brighter future

1 year ago

Offices. Apartments. Schools. Homes. These buildings—and more—are where Americans live, work, play, and learn.  

Yet every year, buildings contribute roughly 35% of our country’s climate-altering carbon emissions—which means the solution to climate change runs right through America’s building stock.  

Decarbonizing 129 million buildings across the country isn’t going to be easy. But we have the tools to do it, thanks to a range of energy-efficient solutions and upgrades—from improving every building’s energy performance, to electrifying appliances and energy services, to totally reinventing the ways we design, build, renovate, operate, optimize, and even deconstruct buildings across our great country. Along with helping to zero out emissions, these tools can lower energy bills and save Americans money—which can make all the difference for lower-income households that may currently spend up to 30% of their paychecks on energy costs. 

And we have the people power to use those tools. Americans of all different backgrounds have stepped up to fill these energy-efficient jobs that help greenify our buildings. In fact, nearly 2.4 million workers joined this energy-efficient industry by the end of 2019—and that number has kept rising in the years since.

At the Department of Energy, we’re doing our part, as well, to keep the country on the path to net-zero. In just the past year, the Department has invested tens of millions of dollars into several initiatives focused on saving families money and keeping energy consumption clean and low. Some of these include:

And there’s still more to come! The historic investments in President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law include $3.5 billion to expand the Weatherization Assistance Program and $500 million for energy efficiency and clean energy projects in public school facilities.

Improving Americans’ lives is at the core of President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda. Not only will this law boost communities’ and businesses’ access to clean energy while protecting our environment, but it will also keep more cash in families’ wallets, too. So, let’s roll up our sleeves, grab our tools, and keep on building our clean energy future!  

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