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March 26, 2015

Washington State Legislature
House of Representatives
P.O. Box 40600
Olympia, WA 98504-0600
 
Dear Representatives,
 
As members of Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2) we write to encourage your support of House Bill 1314, the Carbon Pollution Accountability Act (CPAA).  As business leaders in Washington State, we know that the bottom line drives business and investment decisions. The market signal created by the CPAA will provide the right economic incentive for clean technology companies to do more business in Washington.
 
E2 is a nonpartisan, national community of business leaders who promote sound environmental policies that grow the economy. We are entrepreneurs, investors, and professionals from every sector of the economy who collectively have been involved in the financing, founding or development of more than 1,700 companies that have created more than 570,000 jobs. Our members manage billions of dollars in venture and private equity capital that will flow over the next several years into new companies in Washington and beyond.
 
As a national organization, we have compared Washington’s economic growth with other states. We have found that Washington, which is a leader in traditional green jobs[i], is not ranking competitively on E2’s Clean Energy Jobs Report. In fact, Washington only ranked 32nd of 50 states for new clean energy jobs announced in 2014.[ii]
 


While Washington has fallen behind in cleantech investment and jobs, other states and regions with carbon reduction initiatives are growing their cleantech sectors rapidly. Cleantech Group releases an annual Global 100 list of the top cleantech companies in the nation, and you can see the clear leadership of Northeast states and California in attracting innovative companies. This leadership arises because the two locations are the only regions in the U.S. where carbon reduction programs have been implemented. Washington’s under-representation on this list makes clear that we need a more robust market signal to attract the kinds of companies who are building the next generation of economic growth.
 
Investment dollars are following these companies as well. Between 2006 and 2013, California clean-tech companies accounted for the most venture capital of any state — both by number of deals and total dollars raised. In 2013 alone, California drew 48 percent of the nation’s cleantech investments, and 30 percent of the number of deals.[iii]
 
With these new investments and new companies come new jobs.  Just one part of the cleantech economy - America’s solar industry - now employs more people than Apple, Google, Twitter, and Facebook combined.[iv] In fact, turning back to E2’s Clean Energy Works for Us Report, we find that overall more than 233,000 jobs have been announced at more than 700 clean energy projects in just the last three years. If Washington wants to be a leader in this rapidly growing sector, it will need new policies.
 
A market based carbon pollution program for Washington will bring more investment dollars and help bring new cutting-edge businesses to our state, bringing with them high-paid jobs, more business opportunities, and pollution reduction. E2 members – whether involved in the cleantech industry or in other sectors – know that a carbon program is good for the economy and good for the environment.
 
Please support HB 1314 and help Washington become a leader in innovation, clean technologies and remain a beautiful place to live and do business.
 
Sincerely,
 

Elizabeth Bekiroglu
Associate General Counsel, Seattle Genetics, Inc.
Eric Berman
President and Co-Chair, E8 Angels
Rebecca Deehr
E2 Pacific Northwest Advocate, E2
Van Katzman
Principal, Ascent Law Partners LLP
Bill Lemon
Director, StoneBridge Securities, LLC
Mark Liffmann
Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Business Development, Clean Power Research
John McGarry
Investor
Ingrid Rasch
Board Chair, Earth Economics
Bryce Smith
Level Ten Energy

9 members

 

[i] http://www.epi.org/publication/bp349-assessing-the-green-economy/
[ii] http://cleanenergyworksforus.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/2014_Q4_Report_FINAL.pdf
[iii] Cleantech Group i3 Investment Database. Available at: http://www.cleantech.com/i3/
[iv] http://ecowatch.com/2015/03/10/rhone-resch-solar-shattering-year/

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