Cash rolls in for campaign to protect Washington state carbon market

By Anne C. Mulkern | 03/13/2024 06:47 AM EDT

A ballot initiative to kill the climate program is triggering opposition.

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) speaks in the state Capitol.

Washington Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee speaks in the state Capitol. His cap-and-invest climate program is the target of a ballot initiative. Lindsey Wasson/AP

Money is pouring into the campaign to defeat a Washington ballot measure that would repeal the state’s new carbon market, with supporters of the climate program now holding a large financial edge over their opponents.

The effort to stop ballot initiative 2117 has raised $2.5 million, Washington state data released Monday shows. The campaign holds $920,000 cash on hand, according to its latest filing last month.

Meanwhile, the Taxpayers Protection Alliance, which funded voter signature collections to get the measure on the ballot, had just $69 on hand in July, the last time the group has filed a spending report. It opposes the state carbon market because of the program’s cost, including a fleeting period last summer when Washington gasoline prices soared to the highest levels in the nation.


Brian Heywood, a hedge fund executive, spent about $7 million on the signature-gathering campaign to repeal the state cap-and-invest carbon market along with five other initiatives that range from undoing capital gains taxes to relaxing rules around police chases.