Inslee clean energy bill passes Washington Senate

first_imgOLYMPIA — The state Senate on Friday passed a key piece of Gov. Jay Inslee’s legislative climate agenda, the same day he announced he’s running for president by making fighting global warming his main issue.The bill, which seeks to eliminate fossil fuels like natural gas and coal from the state’s electricity supply by 2045, passed the chamber on a 28-19 vote Friday and now heads to the House for consideration.Inslee announced his 2020 White House bid Friday and said that addressing climate change will be the central issue in his campaign.The bill is the centerpiece of a proposal Inslee announced in December. Washington, which relies heavily on hydroelectric power, already generates 75 percent of its electricity from carbon-free sources. The measure would require utilities to eliminate coal as an energy source by the end of 2025 as the first step toward a goal to provide carbon-free electricity by 2045.Hydroelectric power would count toward the goal, giving the state about 25 years to find carbon-free sources for the remaining 25 percent of its electricity needs.The penalty for noncompliance would be $60 for each megawatt-hour.The bill’s Democratic sponsor in the Senate called the plan necessary to combat global climate change.“We have a moral responsibility to engage on every level,” said Sen. Reuven Carlyle, D-Seattle, after the bill passed. “The idea that we don’t have that responsibility is a punch in the face of our grandchildren’s grandchildren.”last_img

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