I-732 Needed in Washington State

I-732 is a citizen ballot initiative to fight climate change; to make polluters pay when they damage our air, water, and health; and to give that money back to the people, in the most progressive change to our state’s taxes – and probably the biggest anti-poverty measure in this state – in decades.

We care because we know that this one planet, shared by billions of people, is our home. We are today creating a mountain of climate debt and so not only must we pay that down, but first we need to stop making the problem worst. Our children and future generations are counting on us to not screw this up.

I-732 not only taxes the heck out of carbon pollution, it also reduces the state sales tax rate by 1% (which is huge!), and creates and funds a low-income “Working Families Tax Rebate” that would send checks to more than 400,000 families in Washington. It makes Washington’s taxes fairer, particularly for those who earn the least.

The word “tax” appears several times in the I-732 ballot description. You may think that means that you will pay more. But the opposite is true. I-732 taxes pollution, and uses that money to lower the taxes on all of us, especially the lowest income. We should have a rich dialog about this – it’s a matter for all concerned citizens, conservatives and progressives too.

At BWC, we care about creating the right price for carbon as a way to stop dangerous climate shifts that will cause human suffering, loss of coastal cities, mass immigrations, spread of tropical diseases, and will particularly impact the marginalized poorest people on the planet. WA State emissions are part of the problem that is already impacting people in the Philippines, Pakistan, and India with floods, ferocious Typhoons, droughts, and heat waves. we can also be part of the solution. By making pollution cost, I-732 will reduce carbon pollution, and set a standard for the rest of the US and the world.

I-732 makes sense. It’s also the only climate-change-fighting measure on the ballot in 2016. Our next realistic chance is 2020, and we don’t have that long to wait. Passing I-732 will strike a blow against climate change and carbon pollution, and inspire others to act in Washington DC and around the world.

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