WA Truckers, GOP, Fighting Possible Inslee Green Fuel Standard – Could Raise Gas $1-Per-Gallon
You might remember last October and November Newstalk 870 reported Gov. Inslee signed a Pacific Coast energy agreement with CA, OR and British Columbia that includes a pledge to adopt a green fuel standard. Now, Inslee finds himself facing a storm of opposition from truckers, the GOP, and business leaders.
The controversial Pacific Coast climate agreement he signed with the governors of the other coastal states and the Premiere of British Columbia, Canada sets a goal of eventually adopting a completely “green” fuel energy standard. However, several studies done by the petroleum industry and the trucking industry say such standards could raise fuel prices as much as $1.10 per gallon!
In speaking with reporters late last week, Inslee denied the rumors he was prepared to enact such a fuel standard by executive order. He said any such decision would only come about after a study of the economic and environmental effects such a standard would have.
The looming threat of such an expensive green fuel policy is also threatening GOP support of a needed transportation bill that would involve a far lower gas tax, it would be used to fix numerous roads and bridges. The Senate Majority Caucus Coalition is attempting to build support for a transportation plan whose tax increase would be acceptable to both sides of the aisle in Olympia, as well as businesss and other private industry leaders.
With the legislature opening the 2014 session this week, GOP legislators are wary of this green fuel standard. It’s scaring off support for the transportation plan. Legislators fear if they pass a gas tax, and get the transportation plan, that Inslee will turn around and enact the green fuel standard by executive order in July.
The Bellingham Herald reported Monday:
‘Larry Pursley, executive vice president of the Washington Trucking Association, said Friday that a biofuel standard could drive up fuel costs by more than $1.10 a gallon — on top of any gas tax — based on oil industry claims.’
Inslee had originally floated ideas of a $.25 cent-per-gallon gas tax for the transportation budget, GOP leaders had countered with a figure closer to $10-11 cents. No plan was finalized or approved before the legislature adjourned for the 2013 legislative year.