About Dept of Ecology

The Mission of the Department of Ecology is to protect, preserve and enhance Washington’s environment, and promote the wise management of our air, land and water for the benefit of current and future generations.

What is a REC (renewable energy credit)?

The issue:

The Clean Air Rule has complex components within the rule. At a recent webinar about the rule, people asked several questions. We’re posting the answers to these questions on EcoForum and encourage comments to clarify further.

Answer:

A renewable energy credit (REC) is a tracking mechanism for renewable energy projects like wind or solar power), where each credit represents one unit of renewable energy that is produced by a given renewable energy project.

Washington’s renewable energy standard law uses RECs as a compliance tool, as well as other types of renewable energy programs. The CAR provides a framework for how RECs can be used to generate emission reductions that covered parties can count toward compliance, as well as a specific definition for RECs in the proposed WAC 173-442-020 (q).

Should organizations be able to count their carbon pollution reductions toward multiple programs or rules?

Should organizations that are required to reduce their carbon pollution under the Clean Air Rule be able to count their reductions toward multiple programs or rules that require carbon pollution reductions?

The issue

Ecology’s clean air rule proposes that some organizations in Washington would be required to reduce their carbon pollution over time. Other existing or proposed rules might also require carbon pollution reductions. Many people have asked if organizations will be able to count carbon pollution reductions for multiple rules.

For example: The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently set carbon pollution limits for the nation’s existing power plants through a rule called the Clean Power Plan. The EPA’s rule establishes state-specific goals to reduce carbon pollution from existing power plants. Many power plants in Washington would be covered by the Clean Air Rule in addition to the Clean Power Plan.


We appreciate your comments and questions. These communications are part of the public record but are not considered formal comments. The formal comment period will begin after we file the CR-102 form. We expect this to happen in December 2015.

Should Ecology consider giving organizations credit for reducing their greenhouse gas emissions before the program begins?

Issue

Ecology has begun writing a rule that will limit greenhouse gas (carbon) pollution. In recent webinars, many people have asked if the rule will allow organizations to receive credit for reducing their greenhouse gases before the program begins.

Ecology is still in the early stages of the rule. All ideas and concepts are one the table for discussion. Please let us know what you think about giving credit for early actions.

Please share your thoughts. Click “leave a reply” below or the comment icon to the right of the question.


We appreciate your comments and questions. These communications are part of the public record but are not considered formal comments. The formal comment period will begin after we file the CR-102 form. We expect this to happen in December 2015.

How is climate change impacting you and your family now? How do you think it will affect our kids and future generations?

The Issue

Climate change is no longer a far-off risk. Washington is experiencing impacts consistent with what is expected as a result of climate change.

Glaciers and spring snowpack have declined and the timing of stream flows has changed for many rivers. And, climate extremes like floods, droughts, wildfires and landslides are already affecting Washington’s air, water, food sources, and economy. Sea level is rising on most of Washington’s coast, ocean acidification has increased, and there’s long-term warming.


Comments 

Is this discussion, we’re seeking the answers to these three questions.

  1. How is climate change impacting your family now?
  2. What are the effects kids of today are experiencing?
  3. How do you think future generations will be affected?

Please share your thoughts. Click “leave a reply” below or the comment icon to the right of the question.