The hour was late Thursday evening, but the Washington State Senate still passed two pieces of climate change legislation proposed by Governor Inslee — the clean fuel standard and the Climate Commitment Act, also known as the cap-and-invest bill.
The past two years in a row, the clean fuel standard passed the House and then failed in the Senate. But, the third time appears to have been a charm, because it has now passed both chambers.
The clean fuel standard, House Bill 1091, requires manufacturers to lower the amount of carbon in their fuel over the coming years, to the tune of a 10% reduction by 2028 and a 20% reduction by 2035. Oil companies would need to replace that 20% with cleaner sources like biofuels. They could also purchase carbon credits from green energy producers.
Thursday night’s debate drew impassioned speeches, with Democratic proponents calling the bill a crucial step in the fight against climate change, and pointing to the need to make our air healthier for future generations.
Clean fuel standard headed to House floor
Meanwhile, Republican opponents voiced fears that oil companies would pass increased costs incurred by the bill’s mandates on to consumers, hitting lowest-income residents the hardest. Sen. Jeff Wilson (R-Longview) went so far as to say he felt guilt over the Senate taking a break for dinner before the vote when the bill would cause so many of his constituents to go hungry.
After describing his love for Mount Baker and Washington’s other natural splendors, Sen. Reuven Carlyle (D-Seattle) said

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