Statement: Governor’s Carbon Pollution Bill Protects Washingtonians

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Statement: Governor’s Carbon Pollution Bill Protects Washingtonians

By - December 17, 2014

Statement from Executive Director, Remy Trupin, on Governor Inslee’s proposal to address carbon pollution in Washington state.

“The governor’s proposal to address carbon pollution in Washington state will ensure that those hardest hit by the impacts of a changing climate and those least equipped to adapt to climate disruption – such as communities of color, families with low and moderate incomes, and rural Washingtonians – will not be asked to bear more responsibility than the polluters.”

Background
Two major challenges pose the biggest threat to Washington state’s ability to deliver on the promise of a better future for our kids and grandkids: climate change and income inequality. At the intersection of climate change and income inequality are the resources that everyone needs to live – clean air, adequate food, safe water, abundant land, and energy – and the ability to access to them. The consequences of climate change will dramatically affect the quality and availability of these resources; and income inequality impacts how people are protected from and adapt to those consequences.

Governor Inslee’s plan will reduce Washington state’s carbon footprint, while also ensuring that all Washingtonians can support and participate in the low carbon economy.  The governor’s proposal has several key elements that will get us there, including:

  • Much needed investments towards low carbon transportation options and public transit, including pass discounts for riders with low incomes.
  • Key investments in education that will help close the opportunity gap, from early childhood to higher education
  • Funding for the Working Families Tax Rebate (WFTR) which will help to offset transportation and energy costs for over 450,000 households with low and moderate incomes in Washington state
  • Strong accountability measures to ensure the voices of those most heavily impacted by climate change continue to be front and center, with the establishment of an oversight board and implementation of a statewide environmental justice “hotspots” study to better understand and address the disproportionate impact on communities with lower incomes.