Fighting Climate Change & Its Effects
Climate Change

Promote measures to address the climate crisis.


Issue Team Chair: Martin Gibbins, mgibbins@lwvwa.org(425) 361-5007 (Lead)
 DOWNLOAD the Climate Change Issue Paper
Interested in getting involved with this topic? Click here! 

Right Now in Climate Change

(Interested in the 2020 Session Recap? Click Here)

Introduction


As the Legislature deals with restoring normal function to the economy and government operations, attention will focus there. Nevertheless, opportunities exist to drive recovery with investments to reduce our contributions to climate change. The primary such contributions are the energy sources we select and the intensity with which we use them, therefore please see the legislation on the Energy Issue page.

Revisions to the Growth Management Act discussed before the session will require cities and counties to consider action on climate change in their comprehensive plan updates. The League of Women Voters at all levels considers climate change a threat to equity and democracy, therefore—based on the best available information and expert opinion—we will testify for and promote bills that reduce and mitigate climate change.


Bills Needing Action This Week

The Clean Fuels bill (HB 1091, details below) is scheduled for a committee vote on January 21. You can help keep this bill moving. If your representative serves on the House Committee on Environment & Energy (Fitzgibbon, Duerr, Dye, Klicker, Abbarno, Berry, Boehnke, Fey, Goehner, Harris-Talley, Ramel, Shewmake, Slatter) please complete the action alert in the Legislative Newsletter or at this link to tell them to pass the Clean Fuels bill out of this committee.

 ACTION ALERT: If your representative serves on the House Committee on Environment & Energy (Fitzgibbon, Duerr, Dye, Klicker, Abbarno, Berry, Boehnke, Fey, Goehner, Harris-Talley, Ramel, Shewmake, Slatter) please complete the action alert in the Legislative Newsletter or at this link to tell them to pass the Clean Fuels bill out of this committee.

Bills HB 1084, HB 1099, and HB 1117 will have public hearings in House committees this week. You may express you support for these bills with the online process. Select the committee and the date and time of the meeting, then follow the menus. Detailed instructions are in this week’s Legislative Newsletter. Remember, only authorized members can speak for the League; the Issue Chairs will do that. A more powerful influence is many voices speaking for themselves rather than many voices speaking for the League.

 ACTION ALERT: You may express you support for these bills with the online process. Select the committee and the date and time of the meeting, then follow the menus. Detailed instructions are in this week’s Legislative Newsletter. Remember, only authorized members can speak for the League; the Issue Chairs will do that. A more powerful influence is many voices speaking for themselves rather than many voices speaking for the League.


Bills We Support

HB1050 Reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) from hydrofluorocarbons. Many of the working fluids in our air conditioning and heat pump systems are far more powerful greenhouse gasses than carbon dioxide. Hydrofluorocarbons are a powerful greenhouse gas that replaced chlorofluorocarbons to preserve the protective ozone layer of upper atmosphere. We must now enable replacement and control of hydrofluorocarbons as we invest in clean energy sources and in systems that need such working fluids.  

 STATUS UPDATEA public hearing occurred in the House Committee on Environment & Energy on 1/15. Check back for news of a scheduled committee vote.


HB 1084 Reducing statewide greenhouse gas emissions by achieving greater decarbonization of residential and commercial buildings. Carbon dioxide released from fuel used in buildings is a large part of our total state release of our greenhouse gases. Ensuring we begin reducing this source requires an early start to retrofitting heating and other existing systems and installing low carbon systems in new buildings. To achieve the 2050 climate goals, we must avoid stranding investments in current technologies as we construct new buildings, and reduce the on-going carbon footprint in existing buildings.

 STATUS UPDATEScheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Environment & Energy on 1/22 at 10:00 AM.

HB 1091Reducing greenhouse gas emissions by reducing the carbon intensity of transportation fuel. This is a new version of the clean fuels bill. The intent is to reduce greenhouse gas in the fuels we will continue to use, to improve the air quality by reducing pollution, and to ensure Washington has the incentive to create a clean fuel industry.

 STATUS UPDATEHearings were held in the House Environment and Energy Committee on 1/14 and 1/15, and a vote is scheduled in this committee on 1/21 at 1:30 pm (dates and times always subject to change).


Growth Management Act - A number of bills have been filed in this category, including the following:

SB 5042 – Concerning the effective date of certain actions taken under the growth management act. This bill would mandate effective dates of various comp plan designations to a minimum of 60 days past the plan publication date or issuance of a Growth Management Hearings Board final order, whichever is later.

 STATUS UPDATEA public hearing occurred in the Senate Committee on Housing & Local Government on January 12.

HB 1099 – Improving the state’s climate response through updates to the state’s comprehensive planning framework.  This bill would require local governments to plan for mitigation of climate change and how they will aid in achieving the state’s greenhouse gas reduction levels.

 STATUS UPDATEScheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Environment & Energy On 1/19 at 8:00 AM.

HB 1117 – Promoting salmon recovery through revisions to the state’s comprehensive planning network.  It would require that salmon be included in front-end planning undertaken under the growth management act. It defines compensatory mitigation and net ecological gain as measures of salmon protection and mandates that these be covered in land use, critical areas and transportation plans as of January 2024.

 STATUS UPDATEScheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Environment & Energy on 12/21 at 8:00 am.

Bills We Are Watching

SB 5126 Creates a cap and trade program on greenhouse gas emissions with an environmental justice task force to ensure equity in implementation.

 STATUS UPDATEScheduled for public hearing in the Senate Committee on Environment, Energy & Technology on 1/19 at 10:30 AM.

The Energy page lists other bills related to Climate.


How You Can Be Involved
  • During the legislative session we will send Action Alerts in the Legislative Newsletter. Please respond to these, which will direct you to an application to facilitate communicating with your legislators on an important votes in committees or on the chamber floor.
  • Local Leagues in Washington have Action Chairs who coordinate action teams. Some Local Leagues have Environment or Climate teams to take action locally. Contact your local league Action Chair to find out and join.
  • You may also express your opinion on legislation with the LWVWA Issue Chairs. We will take your perspectives under considerations as we determine our support for legislation and prepare testimony. Martin Gibbins, Climate Issue Chair, mgibbins@lwvwa.org

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