Gov. Inslee signs controversial decarbonization bill

A bill that will eventually ban the use of natural gas in Washington has passed state legislature and was signed by Governor Jay Inslee on Thursday.

House Bill 1589 will allow Puget Sound Energy to move away from natural gas at a quicker pace.

Gov. Inslee reportedly had to make intimidating phone calls to members of his own party to find enough votes to get the measure passed.

Most Republicans and some Democrats argue the legislation will cause hundreds of thousands of gas customers to be hit with massive costs and rate increases to make the switch to electric.


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The Washington State Community Action Partnership (WSCAP) says they support the goal of decarbonization, but they have concerns over the implementation for a portion of the measure.

"This will lead to significant short-term rate increases which will disproportionately impact low and moderate income households without corresponding commitments from the utility to retire gas infrastructure to meet climate targets and save customers money," WSCAP said.

Inslee had 15 days to act on the measure, but signed it on Thursday.


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