Even if environmental concerns could be directly and solely attributed to climate change caused by GHGs, this bill isn’t the answer to resolving them. Unfortunately, the positive returns produced by this bill would be virtually unmeasurable. Using a model from the EPA, the proposed carbon tax would yield a temperature reduction of 1/1000 of a degree by year 2100. That degree of change could not even be reliably measured and would have no impact on overall climate.
Not only that, the bill would deliver this negligible return with damaging effects to Washington residents and farmers. Consider the cost at the gas pump alone. A $12 per metric ton carbon tax initiating in 2019, increasing to $30 a metric ton by 2029, amounts to a 10% increase in gas prices by 2020. That’s about 9 cents per gallon to start, increasing to almost 30 cents per gallon. That means an additional $150 per household per year in 2019, increasing to $376 per year in 2029. Those of living in more rural communities also don’t have as many choices available to us when it comes to alternative forms of transportation that would allow us to decrease use of gas.
Now think about heating our homes with natural gas. This increase hits families east of the Cascades harder. Seattle enjoys milder temperatures than, say, Spokane, where residents experience more severely cold days. As a result, families in Spokane use about 22 percent more natural gas for home heating than families in Seattle. Seattle families would pay an additional $41.34 per year in 2019 for heating, increasing to $103.35 per year in 2029. A household in Spokane would pay an additional $50.37 beginning in 2019, and pay $126 more in 2029.
When you add up the household expense increases, Seattle families end up paying an additional $510 by 2029 and Spokane families pay $532. Spread that over the population and communities east of the Cascades bear a greater burden from this bill.
Read More about Washington’s Proposed Carbon Tax: