When Will Low Carbon Tax Begin to Raise WA Gas Prices?
Many drivers are confused over the concept of the WA state low-carbon fuel standard that will soon cause prices to edge upward.
Low carbon fuel 'tax' will cause prices to rise after February
Unlike a gas tax, which you see posted at the pump when you fill your vehicle, this low carbon fuel standard is the by-product of the WA State legislature from 2021 and was signed by Gov. Inslee in 2022.
A gas tax legally can only be used for road and transportation projects. This low carbon fuel standard will also allegedly go towards programs that reduce climate change or global warming in our state.
It 'taxes' businesses and industries by requiring them to purchase carbon credits, which allegedly offset any pollution (Co2) they emit or generate.
According to the Washington Policy Center, Todd Meyers, August 3rd, 2022:
"The legislation requires companies to reduce the carbon intensity of gasoline by blending biofuels or funding EV charging stations..."
Based on what has happened in Oregon, since they passed a low carbon fuel standard in 2015, gas prices will rise. WA legislators and officials who supported the plan say it did not, but the State of Oregon admits it did. According to research by the WA Policy Center, by 2019 gas prices had raised by $2.57 per gallon and a year later that increase was at $3.57 per gallon (of regular unleaded).
However, by 2031, those projections show the fuel standard would add nearly $.20 cents to the cost of a gallon of gas.
When will prices begin to tick upward?
According to the WA State Department of Ecology, the first carbon emission auction (the sale of these credits) will be in the second half of February 2023. Others will be held in May, August, and November. Then once the credits are done being 'auctioned' you will start to see Oregon-like increases at the pump.
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