Today, we released an analysis of the economic impact that the Governor’s cap-and-trade plan will have on the state of Washington. The analysis was conducted by Utah-based Energy Strategies with support from research faculty at the University of Idaho.
The report finds very similar results to the Office of Financial Management’s analysis on the price impacts to gas, diesel, natural gas, and electricity. But, it finds much deeper impacts on employment, household income, and state revenue.
- Over the next 20 years, Washington will have an average of 56,000 fewer jobs each year than under current projections. This includes 6,000 fewer jobs each year in the manufacturing sector.
- The plan will immediately increase the price of gasoline above projections by an additional $0.11 per gallon and by $0.39 in 2035.
- The price of natural gas is expected to increase by 22.6% above baseline projections by the year 2035.
- Gas, heat, and electricity increases are expected to cost the average Washington family an additional $56 per month.
- Income is expected to decrease by an average of $3.1 billion per year, or nearly $1200 per household when divided by the number of Washington households.
- Washington will see an average annual net tax revenue loss of $658M from lower sales, property, and excise taxes resulting from reduced future economic growth. The average annual net revenue raised from the program will be just under 60% of the Governor’s projections.
The report also finds that Washington is making real progress toward greenhouse gas emission reductions. Our per capita GHG emission rate is now 36% below the national average and has been on a downward trend over the last 10 years – despite growth in the economy and population. Washington is within 3% of the state’s 2020 GHG emissions goal, even though the state has consistently overestimated their GHG emission projections. Since 2010 they have reduced their 2020 projections by 4%.
Our coalition remains committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions and protecting the environment. We will be leading a conversation about how we can do that in Washington through an extension of our current policies, which are producing results. A $1 billion energy tax applied to everybody in Washington is only going to drive jobs into higher-carbon states and countries, serving to undercut the very objective the Governor is seeking: a reduction in global emissions.
There is a better way, and we’re committed to working toward that solution.
*Photograph created by Washington Farm Bureau