Schoesler says latest cap-and-trade carbon auction will raise fuel prices again

The recent carbon allowance auction held by the state Department of Ecology under the state’s costly cap-and-trade program will mean even higher fuel prices for drivers in Washington just as the summer driving season is about to start, says 9th District Sen. Mark Schoesler.

“Drivers across Washington will pay even more at the pump thanks to the cap-and-trade program,” said Schoesler, R-Ritzville. “Fuel prices typically rise when summer driving season arrives, and this latest auction by DOE will cause trips to the gas station to be even more expensive for both drivers here and those from other states who want to see Washington.”

Today’s release of the results from DOE’s May 31 auction showed that the price for a Washington carbon allowance was $56.01, up from $48.50 in the February auction. It is estimated that the new allowance price will translate to an additional charge of 45 cents a gallon at the pump. This is slightly higher than the estimated 39-cents-per-gallon impact from February’s auction by DOE.

A rough estimate for revenue raised in last week’s auction is about $480.8 million for current vintage allowances and about $76.2 million for future vintage allowances. The February auction collected nearly $300 million.

Schoesler said Gov. Inslee’s expensive cap-and-trade program, known as the Climate Commitment Act and approved by Democrat majorities in the Legislature in 2021, is taking hundreds of millions of dollars out of drivers’ wallets and handing it over to state agencies for various spending programs, all in the name of climate change.

“The latest carbon auction by DOE is just another example of the Democrats’ spending spree in Olympia that will affect people throughout Washington. Starting July 1, most workers across our state will also have to start paying an expensive payroll tax to fund a very flawed long-term care program.

“It’s shocking how Democrats actually seem to be proud about taking so much money away from citizens. Olympia needs to stop squeezing even more money out of hard-working taxpayers and instead start respecting them,” added Schoesler.

The report from Ecology’s May 31 auction can be viewed here.