Olympia, WA—on May 31, Washington State’s Department of Ecology held its second ever auction for allowances under the Climate Commitment Act (CCA), settling at an allowance price of $56.01. This amounts to over $557 million that will fund climate and clean energy projects across the state and in our communities, with a minimum of 35% that must directly benefit overburdened communities and a minimum of 10% of funds that must be invested in projects led by Tribes. Paired with the near-$300 million from the state’s first auction, that means over $850 million already generated to accelerate Washington’s clean energy transition.
We are on the brink of transformational change: for the first time ever, the state dedicated over $2 billion towards innovative and critical programs that will cut our greatest sources of climate emissions and local pollution, thanks to the Climate Commitment Act.
The 2023-25 state budget offers a useful roadmap for where these funds are headed and how they can get there equitably:
- $120 million for a zero-emission medium- and heavy-duty vehicle incentive program to clean up our roadways and curb toxic diesel pollution, the burden of which falls heaviest on low-income communities and communities of color;
- Over $200 million for weatherization and a new heat pump and electric appliance program to curb indoor air pollution, make clean homes and buildings more affordable, and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, prioritizing the funding for low and moderate-income households;
- $50 million to Tribes to develop climate adaptation and resilience projects;
- $60 million to strengthen the state’s air monitoring network, identify major sources of air pollution in overburdened communities, and develop two new community-driven grant programs to mitigate and eliminate those sources of pollution.
These programs spotlight the Climate Commitment Act’s significant potential to bring tangible and meaningful changes to Washington communities over the next few years. And with the cap-and-invest program already demonstrating a high demand and strong market for allowances, the Climate Commitment Act will remain a transformational source of funding for climate and clean energy projects.