Comparing Energy Efficiency and Plug-in Electric Vehicle Provisions in Energy-Climate Legislation

Provisions in any legislation can be confusing. Trying to compare similar provisions across different bills can compound the confusion. To help make things more clear, we have two side-by-side comparison charts, one on energy-efficiency provisions, and the other on electric plug-in vehicle provisions, of this Congress’ energy and climate legislation.

The energy efficiency provisions in the American Clean Energy and Security Act (ACES, Waxman-Markey), American Clean Energy Leadership Act (ACELA, Bingaman), and Practical Energy and Climate Plan Act (PECPA, Lugar) all stress upgrading building codes and building retrofits to a similar degree while varying in content on appliance standards and energy efficiency in federally-owned buildings and facilities. The energy efficiency chart compares the energy efficiency provisions detailed in those bills. The ACES Act provides the most comprehensive approach to energy efficiency, although it lacks some provisions of other bills, such as federal building energy efficiency and rural energy savings programs. The American Power Act (APA, Kerry-Lieberman), except for establishing a rural energy savings program and a National Industrial Innovation Institute with a focus on energy efficiency, does not include detailed energy efficiency provisions.

The plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) provisions in the ACES Act, ACELA, APA, and the Electric Vehicle Deployment Act (EVDA, Dorgan-Alexander-Merkley) require the Department of Energy (DOE) to deploy PEVs and PEV infrastructure in a similar degree while varying on levels funding and DOE involvement. While all four bills provide incentives to encourage the use of PEVs, the EVDA is the only bill that includes a hard target for vehicle deployment. Furthermore, the EVDA is the most comprehensive, as it includes provisions across a broad range of areas from workforce development to tax policy. ACELA is the only bill that requires the DOE to define charging standards for electric drive transportation.