Hello, CarbonWA friends: A biochar memorial spearheaded by CarbonWA just passed + we’ve been busy! Read on.
Bipartisan Engagement Pays Off – Biochar Bill Passes!
A major project of Carbon Washington the last two years, HMJ 4005, the Biochar Memorial, has now passed both chambers of the state legislature! The Biochar Memorial was introduced in 2018, and came roaring back this year, passing both chambers with unanimous support. You can learn more about the biochar memorial here. CarbonWA’s Greg Rock (pictured above) spearheaded the biochar bill, and said, “It was tremendous to see so much bipartisan support for a climate solution. This memorial led to 5 public hearings and 100 legislator meetings, which also helped lay the groundwork for the Sustainable Farm Bill.” Carbon Washington particularly wants to thank the memorial’s sponsors Senators Van De Wege (D) and Short (R), and Representatives Shea (R) and Fitzgibbon (D).
Youth Inspire State Legislature To Act!
CarbonWA Advocacy Coordinator Katsi Peña joined organizations like Our Climate and Audubon Washington in organizing a youth climate rally on Friday, April 12th. Well over 100 young people attended along with dozens of all-ages supporters. CarbonWA was featured on KAOS radio promoting youth action and important bills during the rally. In a testament to the event’s success, legislators moved a bill for 100% clean electricity to the floor and passed it out of the House of Representatives amidst a backdrop of chants from young people to ‘act on climate now.’ You can learn more about the electricity bill here. It must now go back to the Senate for concurrence before heading to the Governor’s desk for signature.
CarbonWA In The Community
CarbonWA’s Kyle Murphy joined a Climate on Tap panel to discuss political pathways for climate action with former Representative Jessyn Farrell and UW’s Aseem Prakash. We recruited some new volunteers and enjoyed the lively discussion. Catch the next ‘Climate on Tap’ event and more from Cascadia Climate Action here.
EV Investments Bill Passes (!) + Other Bills to Watch
HB 1512, which enables utilities to invest in EV technology, just passed thanks in part due to engagement from CarbonWA. Important bills pertaining to banning HFC’s, advancing low carbon fuels and expanding electric vehicles are still in play. Be on the lookout for CarbonWA insider alerts for ways to help these bills.
Two of CarbonWA’s top priorities, the Sustainable Farms bill and carbon pricing, do not look likely to become law this legislative session. We are proud to have helped spearhead Sustainable Farms, and we are encouraged that it passed the Senate on a bipartisan vote. We mobilized farmers and supporters from all over the state to testify in the House in support. CarbonWA’s Peter Kelly, PhD, agricultural economist, led the way. However, we were disappointed when Ag lobby groups opposed the bill and helped to stall it in the House. We are hopeful that we can engage in fruitful stakeholder discussion in the interim that will lead to a successful bill next session. We have momentum on our side.
While carbon pricing has reverberated around the session, and may rear its head again, our goal to bring forward a bipartisan carbon pricing bill will most likely require another year of stakeholder engagement.
Now is the exact right time to donate to CarbonWA to help us close out the legislative session and to enable us to keep up the momentum heading into 2020. We cannot run intensive programs to develop bill concepts and turn them into law without your buy-in. If you want to see more bills like the Biochar memorial, Sustainable Farms, and carbon pricing — and if you want a lean, mean grassroots machine pushing for climate action — please give now. We can’t do it without you. Seriously.
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