Farmers and producers across Washington could be paying higher fuel prices than they should.  The state’s Climate Commitment Act, or cap-and-trade, went into effect January 1st, establishing a cap on emissions and creating a carbon tax of around 40 cents per gallon.  While farmers were told they would be exempt, the Washington Farm Bureau said they’ve received phone calls from producers saying their invoices shot up because of the carbon fee.


Bre Elsey, Director of Governmental Affairs WFB said she is trying to learn how this happened.


“Why wasn’t agriculture notified that there was a problem? Why was this program ever allowed to be launched knowing what they knew about the lack of implementation? What is the problem in the petroleum world that is causing these reimbursements to be impossible?”

Elsey said much of the confusion is due to the Washington state Department of Ecology’s fuel process, which she called a tangled web.


“So, without clear guidance from the department how would a distributor even know what to do? How would he know how to charge this, how not to charge it? What kind of form he needs to use, how he remits payment to the end-user? There’s all kinds of these questions that have gone unanswered.”


Elsey said many farmers across the state may not be aware of the tax.  She added if you think you’re being charged this fee incorrectly, contact the Department of Ecology.


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