MYNORTHWEST NEWS

I-1631 carbon fee continues to lag behind in early voting

Nov 6, 2018, 8:39 PM | Updated: Nov 7, 2018, 4:16 pm

environment, Seattle Green New Deal...

A coal fired power plant. (AP)

(AP)

Washington state’s carbon fee initiative appears to be going up in smoke as it fails to pass with just 43.9 percent of early vote counts.

Initiative 1631 proposed to place a $15 per metric ton fee on carbon emissions in Washington, starting in 2020. That fee would go up by $2 every following year. Revenue from the fee would be managed by a board and dedicated to environmental purposes.

Check local election results

Proponents have said that the fee would send a market signal to encourage cleaner and renewable energy.  Bill Gates supported the initiative campaign. Gates argued that the initiative will help nuclear and hydropower succeed in Washington, while fostering a clean energy business environment. Gates and his wife Melinda donated $1 million to the campaign effort. Initiative supporters raised more than $11.2 million ahead of the vote.

But I-1631 has faced steep opposition, largely funded by the petroleum industry, arguing that it will result in higher energy costs for customers. More than $22.1 million was raised by committees in opposition to the initiative, with additional millions coming from Phillips 66, BP America, and other companies.

Other critics such as University of Washington Meteorologist Cliff Mass said that the initiative failed to go far enough while handing authority over the revenue to an unelected board. He argued that a revenue-neutral carbon fee would work best, which I-1631 is not.

MyNorthwest News

Image:The New York Giants' Willie Mays poses for a photo during baseball spring training in 1972. M...

Associated Press

Willie Mays, Giants’ electrifying ‘Say Hey Kid,’ dies at 93

Willie Mays, whose singular combination of talent, drive and exuberance made him one of baseball’s greatest players, has died. He was 93.

3 hours ago

Seattle police tombstone...

Matt Markovich

Timing of former SPD chief coming out raises questions amidst legal, administrative turmoil

The former SPD chief's coming out has some unnamed sources within SPD and members questioning the timing of his announcement.

3 hours ago

Image: Drugs, guns and money were seized as part of a large investigation led by the DEA and the Se...

Steve Coogan and James Lynch

Long Washington probe yields 84,000 fentanyl pills, hundreds of pounds of drugs

Four Seattle-area men with ties to Central and South America were arrested in a long probe related to drugs, the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

5 hours ago

Image: Water moves through a spillway of the Lower Granite Dam on the Snake River near Almota on Ap...

Associated Press

US acknowledges Northwest dams have devastated the region’s Native tribes

The U.S. government acknowledged for the first time the harms the construction and operation of dams on two rivers have caused tribes.

6 hours ago

mount baker shooting...

Frank Sumrall

Teen arrested in deadly Mount Baker shooting

A 15-year-old boy has been arrested in the Mount Baker shooting that happened on Sunday, according to Seattle police.

6 hours ago

Steamboat Geyser is protected by a boardwalk and 3-foot fence. (Getty Images)...

Bill Kaczaraba

Lynnwood man creates costly photo opportunity in Yellowstone

A 21-year-old Lynwood man faces legal consequences for his actions near Steamboat Geyser in Yellowstone National Park.

6 hours ago

I-1631 carbon fee continues to lag behind in early voting