The limitless possibility of our electric potential

September 13, 2022

Heat Pump Conversation

We must electrify one billion machines across 121 million households in the coming years. It’s an ambitious goal, making this the decade of electrification. But the Inflation Reduction Act will help us achieve it: It gives every household a sum of money to electrify their home over the next ten years. Our work, at Rewiring America, and as a nation, is to make sure every household knows about this money, and has a plan to use it. That work starts today.

Our job is to make sure every American understands our electric potential. What do we mean by electric potential? Well, the ability to maximize the benefits of the IRA is an expression of electric potential: if we don’t take up the provisions at the scale necessary, we don’t meet our climate goals. If we do, we save billions of dollars and drastically improve the fortunes of people and planet. Needless to say, we should go with the latter option.

The coolest thing about our electric potential is that it’s not only renewing but self-perpetuating. The more we electrify, the more we expand our range of what’s possible, and the more affordable and abundant life becomes. Electric potential is about demonstrating this possibility, so others can join the charge, and extend their range, too.

Power potential

When we started Rewiring America a little over two years ago, we had no idea what the future would bring. But we knew it was a critical moment to advance electrification policy and implementation. Our Co-founder, Saul Griffith, upon being commissioned by the U.S. government to map our energy flows, put forth a compelling case for electrification – we could power our lives with half the energy we currently use. We know how to do this cleanly and efficiently and affordably.

This argument, that the future can be full of abundance and promise, and not scarcity and doom, was somehow new. It landed with so many because they could see, thanks to Saul’s excellent research, that it was true.

You've got the power

The hard part was getting policy and people to help effect this electric transformation on the timelines necessary for planetary success. The Inflation Reduction Act gives us the industrial policy levers we need to catalyze this epic transition on these very timelines.

It also makes residential electrification the hinge point of U.S. climate policy. Which means it really is on all of us.

This is collective work. Electrifying everything is today’s Victory Garden. It’s not just policymakers who will shape the execution of rebates at the state level, but everyday citizens who will share what they’ve learned about installing a heat pump with their neighbor. We need a million electric evangelists to electrify a billion machines. We need to charge forward together, to make this promise a reality.

To help, we’ve created lots of tools to get you going:

Maximize Your Electric Potential