70A.65.130  <<  70A.65.140 >>   70A.65.150

Emissions containment reserve withholding.

(1) To help ensure that the price of allowances remains sufficient to incentivize reductions in greenhouse gas emissions, the department must establish an emissions containment reserve and set an emissions containment reserve trigger price by rule. The price must be set at a reasonable amount above the auction floor price and equal to the level established in jurisdictions with which the department has entered into a linkage agreement. If a jurisdiction with which the department might enter into a linkage agreement has no emissions containment trigger price, the department may suspend the trigger price under this subsection. The purpose of withholding allowances in the emissions containment reserve is to secure additional emissions reductions.
(2) In the event that the emissions containment reserve trigger price is met during an auction, the department must automatically withhold allowances as needed. The department must convert and transfer any allowances that have been withheld from auction into the emissions containment reserve account.
(3) Emissions containment reserve allowances may only be withheld from an auction if the demand for allowances would result in an auction clearing price that is less than the emissions containment reserve trigger price prior to the withholding from the auction of any emissions containment reserve allowances.
(4) The department shall transfer allowances to the emissions containment reserve in the following situations:
(a) No less than two percent of the total number of allowances available from the allowance budgets for calendar years 2023 through 2026;
(b) When allowances are unsold in auctions under RCW 70A.65.100;
(c) When facilities curtail or close consistent with RCW 70A.65.110(6); or
(d) When facilities fall below the emissions threshold. The amount of allowances withdrawn from the program budget must be proportionate to the amount of emissions such a facility was previously using.
(5)(a) Allowances must be distributed from the emissions containment reserve by auction when new covered and opt-in entities enter the program.
(b) Allowances equal to the greenhouse gas emissions resulting from a new or expanded emissions-intensive, trade-exposed facility with emissions in excess of 25,000 metric tons per year during the first applicable compliance period will be provided to the facility from the reserve created in this section and must be retired by the facility. In subsequent compliance periods, the facility will be subject to the regulatory cap and related requirements under this chapter.
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