Campaign News

Hello carbon tax friends: Next week we’ll have more developments, including an update on our legislative language, but for this week (happy Thanksgiving!) we’ll keep it short and sweet:

* We’re delighted to announce a unanimous endorsement for our campaign from the University of Washington’s Confronting Climate Change Student Organization.

* As a follow-up from last week’s terrific TV news story about CarbonWA from Rachel Dubrovin of KLEW-TV (“Carbon gas tax would allow Washington state to reduce sales tax by 1%”), our proposal was featured in an article by Spokane Journal of Business editor Kim Crompton: “Mixing comedy, carbon tax push.” (And, as an aside, if you’re interested in novel approaches to climate change outreach/education, I’m working on a Cartoon Introduction to Climate Change and my co-author and I are welcoming feedback on our first complete draft.)

* Upcoming CarbonWA events include talks at Edmonds Unitarian Universalist Church on Sunday morning Dec 1, at Olympic Climate Action in Port Angeles on Sunday afternoon Dec 1, and at a BGI/Impact Hub lunch on Thursday Dec 5 (tickets here for $8, including lunch!). We’ll also be back at the Impact Hub on T Dec 10 for the 3rd Annual Greendrinks Give Like You Give a Damn Holiday Fair, and at the last CLEW climate workgroup hearing in Olympia, which has been moved to F Dec 13.

* Speaking of the CLEW climate workgroup, as inspiration for the holidays I am forwarding (see below) the comments sent to CLEW by CarbonWA supporter Dave Kershner of Lummi Island.

Dear Climate Workgroup Members,
I applaud your efforts to develop a plan for meeting the state’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction targets and I hope that you will recommend a tax shift along the lines of the successful tax shift implemented by British Columbia five years ago. Washington State has the opportunity to lead the nation in addressing the climate crisis with free-market solutions that have a demonstrated record of success. Researchers with the University of Ottawa have evaluated the first four years of data from British Columbia’s experience with a revenue neutral carbon tax shift. They conclude that, “BC’s carbon tax shift has been a highly effective policy to date. It has contributed to a significant reduction in fossil fuel use per capita, with no evidence of overall adverse economic impacts…”
I would like to submit their report (attached and available at the below link) for the public record of the CLEW and to encourage you to review it:
We have the opportunity to make our tax system both more economically rational and more environmentally sustainable. Let’s put the incentives in the right place: increasing taxes on things we want less of (in this case, environmentally-damaging, carbon-intensive activities), while reducing taxes on things we want more of (for example, clean energy investment).
Carbon emissions are clearly having both economic and environmental consequences for our state, our nation, and our world. We have a responsibility to future generations to reduce our carbon emissions and shift our state toward a clean energy economy. Thank you for your efforts to make our state a leader in addressing the very real threats posed by climate change.
David Kershner
Lummi Island, WA

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