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Washington Raises $300M In Its First Auction For Carbon Pollution Permits

The results are in for Washington's first auction of carbon pollution permits. The program's goal is to drive down climate-harming emissions by putting a price on pollution and investing the proceeds into low-carbon technologies.

Reuven Carlyle, a former state senator who championed the legislation behind the program, was more measured, calling the results "The first step in a long journey of market-based carbon pricing." The program applies to most businesses whose annual emissions exceed 25,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide, with exceptions such as aviation fuels and agricultural operations.

The state's Department of Ecology runs the cap-and-invest program and held its first auction last month.

Carbon Emissions Reduction Account, funding projects to reduce transportation emissions - Washington's largest carbon source; Climate Investment Account, funding clean energy, carbon removal, ecosystem health and the operations of the cap-and-invest program; Air Quality and Health Disparities Improvement Account, funding projects to benefit communities most harmed by pollution.

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