OLYMPIA – Recently proposed legislation would strengthen Washington’s commitment to combating climate change. House Bill 2225, sponsored by Rep. Vandana Slatter (D-Bellevue) would align Washington state’s greenhouse gas emission limits with those established under the 2015 Paris climate agreement.
The Paris climate agreement was an unprecedented collaboration between almost every nation in the world to address the global threat of climate change. The 195 countries that signed the agreement pledged to contribute to the global reduction of greenhouse gas emissions. In April of 2016, the United States signed the agreement and committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 26 percent below 2005 levels by the year 2025.
Washington state has been a leader in environmental policy and promoting renewable energy. In the wake of the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris climate agreement, Washington state continued to lead the way by joining the United States Climate Alliance and renewing the commitment to taking action on climate change. House Bill 2225 would strengthen that commitment by incorporating the goals for greenhouse gas reduction under the 2015 Paris climate agreement into state law.
“The shortsighted decision at the federal level to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement increased the need for us to take action at the state level,” said Rep. Slatter. “With this bill, Washington state will continue to lead the way in supporting good environmental policy that moves not only our state, but our world, toward a cleaner future.”
If passed, Washington would be the second state to commit to upholding the Paris climate agreement through state law.