Today, we celebrate with President Biden, the majority of Americans, and the entire world that the United States is in the process of assuming its position as a global leader on climate change with the signing of The Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). The IRA marks the single largest investment to address the climate crisis, build community resilience in the face of extreme weather, and defend the health of our children from life-shortening fossil fuel pollution. Together, with the two other members of the dynamic triplet – the CHIPS and Science Act of 2022 and the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act – the IRA will restore American Infrastructure, rebuild U.S. manufacturing, and revitalize American communities with much-needed, family-sustaining jobs.
These bills stand to bring all Americans together by starting the process of addressing many of the problems that some have used to divide us. As evangelical Christians, the Bible is our guide to life, and Mark 12:29-31 (NIV) supplies Jesus’s most important commands:
"'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”
Together, these policies set the stage to love our neighbors and leave no one behind. From urban cities and former fossil fuel sites to America’s abundant rural and farming communities, all stand to gain. Our children and grandchildren, to whom Scripture calls us to pass down a good inheritance (Proverbs 13:22), will especially benefit from the IRA’s investments in clean air, pure water, and a safer climate. These bills provide the opportunity for all Americans to find an abundant life unhindered by pollution and begin the process of finally investing in communities who have long been forced to endure redlining and other racist acts. It also provides hope to those communities who have suffered greatly to fuel America’s addiction to fossil fuels while sacrificing their own health and lives.
While more action is needed, the IRA is a significant start. We are thankful for President Biden’s leadership as well as Senator Manchin, Majority Leader Schumer, Speaker Pelosi, and each member of the United States Congress that voted for these bills, putting people before politics and hope above despair.