Washington State has made important progress on climate with the passage of 100% clean electricity, Clean Fuel Standard, Climate Commitment Act, enshrining environmental justice into law, and establishing energy efficiency standards for commercial buildings statewide. Every day local jurisdictions are making progress on addressing building emissions. But there is more to do to take urgent action to reduce our carbon pollution and meet our statutory climate goals. The most recent Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report is clear: we must continue to take bold actions to address the climate crisis and to avert mounting catastrophic and deadly impacts. We are already seeing climate impacts in Washington, including hotter temperatures, more frequent and fiercer wildfires, and intense flooding. The Washington Legislature must continue to accelerate big solutions to the climate crisis for our health, our climate, and our future. 

Read more about our 2022 legislative priorities.

Buildings

Buildings are the fastest-growing source of emissions in Washington, which is largely attributable to the use of fossil gas for space and water heating and cooking.  If our homes and buildings were carbon-free and energy efficient, we would significantly reduce our climate pollution, drastically cut energy costs for owners and renters, and improve air quality where we live and work. Combusting fossil gas also poses significant health risks for our communities, children, and other vulnerable populations. In addition, where and how we build matters and planning should be consistent with our state’s climate goals. Washington needs policies to move towards 100% clean, all-electric buildings that will keep residents safe and healthy.

HB 1767 SB 5666 | Targeted Electrification

The targeted electrification incentive bill will clarify that public utilities can create electrification programs, allowing them to provide incentives for customers to buy efficient heat pumps. Utility electrification programs will improve customer choice, lower the cost of efficient all-electric technologies, and level the playing field between private and public utilities. These programs are beneficial to both the utility and the utility’s customers, so it’s a win-win.

Transportation

We all want clean, affordable, accessible, safe and efficient ways to get around. Research from Climate Solutions shows the best way to decarbonize transportation requires both electrification of nearly all vehicles on the road and reducing the need for personal vehicles through transit expansion, efficient land use policy, safe bicycle and pedestrian networks, and more. The climate agenda for the 2022 session will set Washington on a path to achieving this future by building on the success of the Clean Fuel Standard. 

Air Quality Surcharge

(AQS) is a progressive and flexible source of revenue that would only impact a small number of Washingtonians who tend to be in the top income quintile. The AQS charge would vary based on a vehicle’s estimated lifetime greenhouse gas pollution, thereby incentivizing cleaner vehicle purchases in addition to providing much-needed multimodal funding.

HB 1099 | Growth Management Act (WA Can't Wait Campaign)

The Growth Management Act should be updated to reflect climate change, housing affordability, and issues of environmental justice and ensure our long-range planning leads to reduced climate pollution, more resilient communities, and adequate affordable housing. This must happen in the 2022 legislative session, before cities and counties embark on updating their next comprehensive plan, to ensure those plans include considerations for climate change, greenhouse gas emissions reductions, and consistency with the state energy strategy and climate goals. 

Cross sector

We can have a thriving, equitable Northwest, powered by clean energy and we can lead and inspire the transition to sustainable prosperity across the nation and beyond. The fossil fuel industry’s resistance to innovation and progress toward a clean energy future means that we need a broad and committed movement to accelerate clean energy solutions to the climate crisis. With Washington’s natural resources, historic clean energy achievements, technology leadership, and emphasis on sustainable prosperity make our region a natural leader in the transition to a clean energy future.

HB 1682 | Finishing the Job on the Climate Commitment Act

2021’s passage of the Climate Commitment Act (CCA) will herald a new more sustainable economy for our state, but a number of topics remain unfinished that need to be addressed in 2022 including restoring tribal consent for projects funded with carbon dollars, a long term trajectory for Energy-Intensive Trade-Exposed (EITE) that protects the integrity of the cap and ensures that all sectors—including industry—do their fair share, and developing a program to address the annual 2.7 million tons of climate pollution from landfill emissions.

HB 1812 | Improve Clean Energy Siting

We need to replace our expansive fossil fuel infrastructure—oil refineries, natural gas power plants, and more—with new clean replacements and improved siting laws: clean manufacturing, green hydrogen production, renewable energy generation, new transmission capacity, biofuel refining and more. This includes clarity for project proponents around the state’s expectations, certainty and predictability around review timeline, and more.

HB 1799 | SB 5371 Organics Management

To reduce methane emissions from landfills we need to set a statewide target for diversion of organic material from the landfill/incinerator stream and a separate target for edible food diversion to food rescue groups. Legislation will also reclaim usable food from the waste stream and help provide it to those most in need.

SB 5659 | Buy Clean, Buy Fair

Buy Clean policies, such as the policy passed in California in 2017, mandate that emissions from certain materials be documented and considered when contracting for state-funded infrastructure projects. Adding a Buy Fair element requires contractors and subcontractors to report on domestic labor law compliance in the countries where they produce goods and services, incentivizing clean and fair manufacturing. In 2022, Climate Solutions and partners will prioritize a bill that requires disclosure of embodied carbon (carbon associated with a product’s manufacture) and labor practices to help the state understand its procurement practices, and consider procurement requirements in future sessions.

Washington State Government

2016 Western Washington Solutions Summit

by Caleb Smith on May 17, 2016

The 2016 Western Washington Solutions Summit hosted by the Washington Policy Center will convene over 600 policymaker

Saudis adopt post-oil plan, China halts 200 coal plants

by Seth Zuckerman on May 2, 2016

South African concentrating solar plant generates round the clock, Ukraine marks Chernobyl anniversary, solar auction hits new low under 3 cents per…

Court agrees with these kids: Washington must curb pollution

by Ross Macfarlane and Taylor Halperin on May 2, 2016

A group of Washington State youth known as the “climate kids” just won an important victory in their bid to force the

175 nations sign Paris pact; Senate passes energy bill

by Seth Zuckerman on April 25, 2016

World Bank and IMF push countries toward carbon pricing, Tacoma gas-to-methanol proposal withdrawn, rail cars to store excess electricity, and more…

What now? Clean energy, climate, and the Washington Legislature 2016

by Vlad Gutman and Caleb Smith on April 19, 2016

After 12 turbulent weeks, complete with an unanticipated special session, Washington’s 2016 legislative season drew to a close at the end of March.…

Tesla ignites frenzy, Hawaii plans for 100% clean power

by Seth Zuckerman on April 4, 2016

2.5 million Americans work in clean energy, South Africa and Nevada solar plants provide night-time power, coalition builds behind Clean Power Plan, …

WWU 2016 Energy Symposium

by Caleb Smith on March 23, 2016

On April 19, 2016 the Western Washington University Institute for Energy Studies will be holding its first Energy Symposium.  Students, faculty, and…

Growth in EV use could lead to next oil glut in 2020s

by Seth Zuckerman on February 29, 2016

Utilities move to cut coal use despite stay on Clean Power Plan, Shell replaces executive who led Arctic oil push, Midwest wind generation sets new…

Washington State takes steps to strengthen Clean Air Rule, cut emissions

by Vlad Gutman-Britten on February 26, 2016

Cleaner air ahead! Washington's Department of Ecology is giving itself the opportunity to strengthen new plans to cut carbon emissions and to…

This law would send WA backwards on climate action (that's the wrong direction)

by Caleb Smith on February 12, 2016

When it comes to global warming, we can't afford inaction. But that's what some Washington lawmakers are proposing, with a bill that would halt…

We've got momentum

by Gregg Small on February 5, 2016

Events in 2015 created so much momentum for the fight to stop global warming, and the first weeks of 2016 proved no different. Here's what Climate…

Step by step towards a clean-energy future

by Vlad Gutman-Britten on February 1, 2016

With the Washington State Legislature's 2016 session underway, Climate Solutions is working to decarbonize our state’s power grid, to cap climate-…

US solar jobs top 200,000; feds halt new coal leasing

by Seth Zuckerman on January 19, 2016

Global investment in renewables hits $329 B record in 2015; oil-train activists offer defense of necessity; utility-scale solar costs drop 17% in a…

Hey coal terminal: send not for whom the bell tolls

by Joëlle Robinson on January 12, 2016

Arch Coal's bankruptcy filing sends a huge signal that coal export is a bad business, and has no place in the Washington economy. Let's make sure our…

OR deal to phase out coal, double renewable power

by Seth Zuckerman on January 11, 2016

Solar supplies nearly 10 percent of California’s power in 2015, GM rolls out mass-market electric car with 200-mile range, NASA tests more efficient…

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Washington Events

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We all agree: it's time for climate action in Washington

A coalition of more than 25 organizations sent a message to Washington state legislators calling for strong climate action, in the form of three key solutions: (1) supporting a path to 100% carbon-free electricity, (2) putting a price on carbon pollution, and (3) advancing clean fuels for transportation.

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2017: The highlights were pretty bright

Yes, 2017 was an awful year in many ways. But it was also a year of transition for climate action. We and many others affirmed our ability to make progress at the speed and scale our climate crisis demands.

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