SAIC Provides Washington State with Climate Change Policy Options

Five years ago, Washington’s Legislature set a goal to reduce carbon house emissions by 2020.  As first part of a process to implement action steps, the state’s newly created climate workgroup has received a list of policies that might be implemented.  Science Application International Corporation, consultant to the workgroup, presented a list to the two Republican and two Democratic legislators led by Governor Jay Inslee.

In 2008, Washington’s Legislature set a goal of reducing the state’s greenhouse emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 and trimming emissions to 25 percent below the 1990 level by 2035.

But so far, nothing has happened.

The Governor successfully lobbied the Legislature to set up a task force to map out how those goals can be reached. The task force is supposed to have recommendations for the state Legislature by the end of 2013. The panel will meet next in early September.

SAIC has looked at emissions trading programs, carbon taxes, power production, transportation measures, industrial processes, reductions to wastes that create greenhouse gases, and water conservation.  The programs that SAIC recommends that Washington study include cap-and-trade, energy efficiency efforts, ways to increase public transit, British Columbia’s carbon tax and cap-and-trade approaches to limiting emissions.

Source:  John Stang, Crosscut, July 18, 2013.