Washington’s 2018 legislative session started January 8 and is scheduled to end March 8. In a short session, activity has been fast and furious, and there many bills that would directly or indirectly affect the landscape for zero net carbon buildings in Washington. A brief highlight of some of the interesting bills currently active:
- HB 2931 would direct the State Building Code Council to establish a voluntary residential energy stretch code – a tier 10% higher than code and a tier 20% higher than code. Jurisdictions would then be free to select either the base residential energy code or to aim higher, and choose of the stretches.
- SB 6203 is Governor Inslee’s proposed carbon tax. It would impose a carbon pollution tax on the sale/use of fossil fuels and fossil-fuel based electricity.
- HB 2319 would require investor-owned utilities to implement meter-based conservation (“pay for performance”) programs and programs that provide incentives based on the normalized energy baseline.
- HB 2410 would require utilities to offer on-bill repayment programs for customers to finance energy efficiency upgrades and distributed energy installations.
- Other bills that Shift Zero is tracking are HB 2402, SB 6253, and HB 2283, which would all impact electric utility planning for new resources, including energy efficiency; HB 2327, which would establish energy and water standards for a variety of home and commercial products; and HB 2412, which would require disclosure in public projects of global warming potential of different building materials.
For any specific questions on these bills, please contact Amy Wheeless at the NW Energy Coalition at firstname.lastname@example.org.