On June 6, 2022, President Biden issued a White House Fact Sheet (“Fact Sheet”) outlining President Biden’s “Bold Executive Action to Spur Domestic Clean Energy Manufacturing” along with five related Defense Production Act (“DPA”) Presidential Determinations (“Presidential Determinations”) and a Declaration of Emergency and Authorization for Temporary Extensions of Time and Duty-Free Importation of Solar Cells and Module from Southeast Asia (the “Declaration”). The Fact Sheet states the President is (1) authorizing use of the DPA to accelerate domestic production of clean energy technologies; (2) encouraging domestic solar manufacturing capacity through the use of master supply agreements with enhanced domestic preferences; and (3) creating a two-year trade regulation bridge as domestic manufacturing for solar products scales up. The White House stated that these actions are being taken to lower energy costs, reduce risks to the power grid, and mitigate climate change. The Department of Energy (“DOE”) also released a statement on June 6 about the DPA Presidential Determinations which describes DOE’s concerns with regard to each material or technology for which a determination was issued. The statements made by the White House and DOE also make clear that these actions to employ the DPA are part of the Administration’s broader “all of government” approach to addressing Environmental Justice, with the intention to “strongly encourage projects with environmental justice outcomes that empower the clean energy transition in low income communities historically overburdened by legacy pollution.”
Robert L. LaFrankie is a partner in Crowell & Moring's International Trade Group and resident in the firm's Washington, D.C. office. Bob regularly advises manufacturers, exporters, and importers in all aspects of international trade and customs proceedings before various government agencies, courts, and international tribunals. He focuses on trade-related litigation and counseling, including trade remedy proceedings and U.S. Customs compliance and enforcement issues. Bob has successfully defended numerous clients located throughout Asia, Europe, and the Americas that produce or import a diverse range of products, including flat-rolled and specialty steel products and components, chemicals and plastics, frozen and canned food products, paper products, motor vehicle parts and components, specialty valves and valve systems, disposable lighters, petrochemical and renewable fuels, anti-friction bearings, and other manufactured products. In addition to litigation and compliance counseling, Bob engages in strategic trade remedy and customs planning activities for clients, particularly for companies with global sourcing, manufacturing, and export/import operations. He also advises companies with regard to NAFTA compliance issues and related audits of client facilities.