After incorporating feedback from business and environmental stakeholders, the state Ecology Department has released an updated version of the state’s first-ever rule to cap carbon pollution and both March Point refineries are on the list.
A list of potential regulated businesses provided by Ecology includes the Shell and Tesoro refineries in Anacortes. Ecology's Web site says, "We're moving ahead quickly and expect to adopt the rule in late summer."
The Clean Air Rule will reduce carbon pollution to help slow climate change.
Ecology withdrew its original draft of the Clean Air Rule in order to act quickly on improvements and to stay on track with adopting the rule by late summer. Now the agency wants to hear from the public and is accepting comments on the rule.
"Carbon pollution has reached rampant levels and we're committed to capping and reducing it," said Sarah Rees, Ecology's special assistant on climate change policy. "Climate change is the most significant environmental issue of our lifetime, and governments need to act now to protect what we have today for future generations."
Washington faces severe economic impacts from the changing climate. The proposed rule would set limits on carbon pollution (greenhouse gases) to help slow climate change and limit expected damage to the state’s rich agricultural resources, drinking water supplies, and infrastructure.
Some of the changes made to the rule include incorporating mechanisms to ensure emissions are reduced while supporting business growth; recognizing early actions already taken to reduce emissions; and an effective pathway for power plants.
The rule would require businesses and organizations that are responsible for large amounts of greenhouse gases like natural gas distributors, petroleum product producers and importers, power plants, metal manufacturers, waste facilities, and others to show once every three years that they’re reducing their emissions an average of 1.7 percent annually.