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What’s in the Infrastructure Bill? Electric Vehicles, Clean Energy, More.

  • The House passed the long-awaited $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill on Friday.
  • The plan includes $550 billion to fund advancements in public transit, clean energy, electric vehicles, and roads and bridges.
  • We took a closer look at key funding areas of the legislation, below. 
  • See more stories on Insider’s business page.

The House passed the long-awaited $1 trillion bipartisan infrastructure bill on Friday, aimed at restoring American transportation systems, fighting climate change, and increasing access to high-speed internet service. 

The legislation is estimated to create 1.5 million jobs per year over the next decade, and marks “the single largest investment in repairing and reconstructing our nation’s bridges since the construction of the interstate highway system,” according to the White House

“Tonight, we took a monumental step forward as a nation,” President Joe Biden said in a statement. “Generations from now, people will look back and know this is when America won the economic competition for the 21st Century.” 

The bill passed in a 228-206 vote, with 13 House Republicans joining most Democrats to lend key votes. While its passage marks a decisive legislative victory for the Biden administration, it also puts a hold on a larger social spending and climate bill, as Democratic infighting between moderates and progressives continues over the lofty price tag. 

The final version of the bill, which clocks in at 1,039 pages, includes $550 billion in new spending. Here’s how it breaks down: 

Roads, bridges, and transit safety

The deal puts $110 billion toward roads, bridges, and other projects. Those investments will “focus on climate change mitigation, resilience, equity, and safety for all users,” including cyclists and pedestrians,” according to a White House fact sheet. That includes:

  • $40 billion for bridges, which would go toward repairs and replacements
  • $17.5 billion for other “complex,” major projects that aren’t traditionally eligible for funding
  • In addition, the deal would put $11 billion toward “transportation safety programs,” with an emphasis on pedestrians and cyclists

Trains, buses, and ferries (oh my!)

The deal invests in both transit infrastructure and Amtrak, President Joe Biden’s beloved form of transit.

  • $39 billion for public transit, which would go toward upgrading and modernizing infrastructure, and increasing accessibility
  • $66 billion for rail, which includes:
    • $22 billion in Amtrak grants
    • $24 billion in grants to help modernize the Northeast Corridor (a politically important route, which even has its own slew of Northeast presidential primaries named after it: the Acela primaries).
    • $12 billion toward intercity rail
    • $5 billion in “rail improvement and safety grants”
    • $3 billion for other safety improvements
  • $2.5 billion for zero-emission buses
  • $2.5 billion for low emission buses
  • $2.5 billion for ferries

Electric vehicles

  • $7.5 billion to create a network of electric vehicle chargers across the country

Water and air

  • $17 billion for port infrastructure 
  • $25 billion for airports, with an emphasis on addressing backlogs and reducing emission in both types of ports
  • “Over $50 billion” in water infrastructure, with an emphasis on building resiliency amidst climate change and cyber attacks
  • $55 billion toward clean drinking water, which includes replacing lead pipes and addressing water contamination

Internet and power

  • $65 billion for high-speed broadband
  • $65 billion for grid modernization, which the White House says is the “single largest investment in clean energy transmission in American history”

Climate change and community

  • $1 billion toward reconstructing and reconceiving infrastructure that physically divides communities, as seen in the fact that “significant portions of the interstate highway system were built through Black neighborhoods”
  • $21 billion toward “environmental remediation,” which will address idle energy sites that are, on the whole, disproportionately closer to Americans of color. The funds mark “the largest investment in addressing the legacy pollution,” per the White House
  • $50 billion to support communities afflicted by the devastating effects of natural disasters like forest fires, floods, droughts, and storms that have been exacerbated by climate change. 

How it’s funded

The biggest chunk of proposed funding to offset the cost of the bill, $210 billion, comes from unused COVID-19 relief funds.

The bill proposes another $87 billion in offsets from proceeds of 5G spectrum auctions, $53 billion from repurposing unspent unemployment insurance funds, $49 billion from delaying the implementation of a Medicare part D rebate rule, and $28 billion from stricter reporting requirements of cryptocurrency transactions.

Other smaller proposed offsets in the bill include selling off some of the US’ strategic petroleum reserve, reimposing fees for superfunds, continuing fees on government-sponsored entities (like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae), extending customers user fees, extending the mandatory sequester, and pension smoothing, 

 

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