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Gov. Kate Brown signs ambitious energy bill

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown visits Eugene electric vehicle maker Arcimoto
Gov. Kate Brown's Office
Oregon Gov. Kate Brown visits Eugene electric vehicle maker Arcimoto

(Update: Adding governor's news release)

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon’s clean energy bill, which sets one of the most ambitious timelines in the country for moving to 100% clean electricity sources, was signed by Gov. Kate Brown on Tuesday.

The legislation lays out a timetable for the state’s two major power companies — Portland General Electric and Pacific Power — to reduce greenhouse gas emissions associated with electricity sold to Oregon consumers. Additionally, it bans the expansion or new construction of power plants that burn fossil fuels and allocates $50 million in grants for community-based energy projects, among other measures.

“With these policies, we will create jobs in a 21st Century, clean energy economy,” Brown said. “We will reduce carbon emissions. And, we will make sure the economic, environmental and health benefits of our clean energy economy reach all Oregonians, especially those who have been disproportionately impacted by climate change and pollution.”

The bill requires Portland General Electric and Pacific Power to submit plans to reduce emissions by 80% from a baseline amount by 2030, 90% by 2035 and 100% by 2040.

Dave Robertson, vice president of Public Affairs at Portland General Electric, says the timeline is an “important step toward the clean energy future.”

“It provides a clear path for this critical transition while protecting the affordability and reliability of electricity, and it establishes greenhouse gas reduction targets that are in line with the climate goals we set for ourselves late last year,” Robertson said.

At least 17 other states and the District of Columbia have already adopted similar goals, according to the Clean Energy States Alliance.

But officials say Oregon’s timeline is the strongest electricity emissions reduction timeline in the country. The deadline is nearer than nearly every other state that has adopted a clean power plan, including Washington and California.

Oregon will measure its progress in an atypical way, too.

Most states have opted to ratchet down greenhouse gas emissions by requiring utilities to gradually increase the amount of power they get from renewable energy sources like wind and solar. Oregon, which has already had such a “renewable portfolio standard” since 2007, is taking a more straightforward approach: requiring Portland General Electric and Pacific Power to reduce their overall carbon emissions, which are tracked by the state’s Department of Environmental Quality.

“Already, we are seeing the devastating impacts of climate change, from more frequent drought to more severe wildfire seasons that put our homes and our families in jeopardy,” said Rep. Jason Kropf, a sponsor of the bill and a Bend Democrat. “This bill will put Oregon on a pathway for a more environmentally sound future and create economic opportunity and jobs for our working families.”

Environmental activists have called the bill’s passage a huge victory, especially as the state and country continue to see the worsening effects of climate change. But the bill, which passed in Oregon’s Senate 16-12 and in the House 35-20, has also been criticized.

Opponents of the bill say the policy will increase electric prices for Oregonians, cause business energy costs to skyrocket and put strain on the power grid — possibly leading to rolling blackouts.

Read more at: https://apnews.com/article/business-oregon-bills-climate-change-2d1916e18012471bdba75dea45793228


News release from Gov. Kate Brown's office:

Governor Kate Brown Signs Clean Energy Bills, Sets Goal for 100% Clean Energy by 2040

Oregon now has the most aggressive timeline in the country for clean energy transition

(Portland, OR) — Governor Kate Brown signed into law a comprehensive clean energy bill package today at 11:15 a.m. at Daimler Truck North America and Portland General Electric’s Electric Island commercial vehicle charging center in Portland. House Bill 2021, the 100% Clean Energy bill, sets the most aggressive timeline in the country for moving to 100% clean electricity sources, by 2040.

House Bill 2021House Bill 2165House Bill 2475, and House Bill 3141 address the climate crisis head on by accelerating the clean energy transition in Oregon and centering the needs of Oregon’s most vulnerable communities.

“With these policies, we will create jobs in a 21st Century, clean energy economy, said Governor Brown. “We will reduce carbon emissions. And, we will make sure the economic, environmental, and health benefits of our clean energy economy reach all Oregonians, especially those who have been disproportionately impacted by climate change and pollution. Oregon is leading the way.

“I have continued to make climate action an urgent priority as Oregon continues to grapple with repeated climate disasters, the impacts of which are felt disproportionately by Black, Indigenous, Latino, Latina, Latinx, Asian, Pacific Islander, Tribal, communities of color, low income, and rural communities. I’m so proud that we have taken steps forward to address climate change and build a more sustainable Oregon. All the while, growing our economy and creating green jobs. I want to thank the legislative leaders, advocacy groups, community groups, utilities, renewable energy developers, and other businesses who worked tirelessly to see these bills become law.”

Collectively, these bills will reduce emissions, expand clean energy access, enhance energy efficiency programs, and create good paying clean technology jobs in Oregon. This comprehensive legislative package helps ensure that Oregon achieves its greenhouse gas reduction goals while protecting electricity customers.

The Associated Press

KTVZ news sources

Comments

30 Comments

    1. The state of Oregon figured out how to steal elections a long time using mail-in voting. They were pioneers. So if you think anything is going to change come November you are fooling yourself. Sorry to say it my friend.

      1. Yep, even more losing for the totally failed and obsolete GOP. “Gee too bad” as your disaster of a dear leader likes to say about tragedies. It’ll be ok with some more chewing tobacco and a bottle of fire ball!!!

  1. Only this dipstick would support this kind of baloney! She secretly signed an agreement to remove dams near our southern border which could have been converted to produce the electricity needed to charge these throw away vehicles that she seems to adore. Secondly our state ALONE cannot make a measurable impact on global warming! Somewhere, somehow her buddies are going to get very rich at our expense. Mother earth is doing a self cleansing and anyone who believes otherwise has bought into the idiocy of global warming caused by us.

  2. I am just waiting for all the electric cars along the road that won’t run. Wondered what happened oh they ran out of juice. And there is not enough power and stations to plug them in. Brain dead politicians think they are smart but dumber than a box of rocks. But you watch the rich will still go because they will be using fossil fuels and laughing at the dummies while they are drinking their coctails in some far off resort.

    1. Why would there be electric cars on the road that ran out of juice? Why would there not be enough electricity to power them?

      And even if there were, plenty of guzzlers run out of gas and need towing.

      What’s your point?

      1. Uhh because the power grids are old, outdated, and at maximum capacity as noted in a news article today. Have you heard the term “rolling blackout” ? Another lovely problem Californians are bringing here

      2. You wouldn’t understand, there is already a shortage of power all over the US. Solar panels made in China and wind turbines will never meet the demands.

    2. You are so right! The F-150 Lightning has a pathetic range of only 500 miles. There a few electric cars with ranges of only 600 and 1000 miles too! Pathetic!

      All of this and I can barely get to the grocery store and back 41 times in the F-150 Lightning before it need recharging. Nobody seems to be building these things. Gas power and better yet Diesel forever!

      I for one still ride a horse and buggy. I don’t think the horseless carriage will ever be a thing!

  3. That’s all dandy but what are we doing about Mexico, China other countries. So we clean up Ore more which contributes far less emissions per capita and save the world. We are not even a drop in the bucket world wide. Kate isn’t worried about anything other than making a name for herself for her political future which she has already proven. If you think this will not cost you a lot of money think again.

    1. If you and your neighbor’s house were on fire, and your neighbor was refusing to put his out, would you just decide to let yours burn too?

      Just because we have irresponsible countries as our Earthly neighbors doesnt mean we should be one too.

      1. Not a very good analogy. Kate Brown and this pipe dream will raise costs in all sectors of the economy and create an even poorer business environment. People are going to lose jobs.
        In the end, nothing positive will be achieved by the signing of this bill. This includes absolutely no change in the temperature of the planet. None. Kate Brown is well aware of this, she doesn’t care. Her motives are far more radical and sinister than “climate change” and the ends justify the means in her demented mind.

  4. I want to see fossil fuels die and the world go green, I dearly do. However bills and edicts and things such as this are just political grandstanding and wastes of money. The “deadlines” they set will either be pushed back or ignored, or the whole thing will be outright undone by a new administration.

    These toothless proclamations are worthless.

    We will never see real results until we set hard deadlines measure in years not decades, with no wiggle room for pushing back the date or simply accepting a fine, and that cannot be overturned by the next guy or gal down the lines.

    I;ll believe the government is committed to a green future when we see things like “In 2 years, gasoline sales will be banned. If people arent ready by then, tough luck.”

    In the meantime, ho hum. More chest beating from the toothless left.

    1. This technology requires critical or rare Earth minerals- supplies are already low- will create a black market- War- death- destruction.

  5. Awesome, more solar panels, and wind turbines to be purchased from China. Queen Kate, paying back the people that got her, and Old joe into office.

  6. You can attempt to legislate all transportation electric and make these announcements of whatever percentage by whatever year and smile and talk all day but it’s not gonna work that way. The bathroom replaced the outhouse for many logical reasons and advantages. The computer replaced the typewriter for the same reasons, the care replaced the horse and buggy because it was faster, more reliable, more comfortable and more sensible. If and when electric cars become all of these things and more not to mention affordable then logic will take its course and fossil fuel vehicles will be replaced. Until then you can legislate and give big speeches all you want but electric cars have a long list of unchecked boxes.

    1. Rural Oregonians deny climate change because when their fields dry up and their cows have nothing to eat they can just sit back and collect government checks.

  7. She is in the top five dumbest women in the country. When I travel to Portland, Salem, Eugene, and now sadly, Bend, I understand why she leads so many of these people. Unbelievable….

    1. They left out the obligatory “communities of color hardest hit” when the price of electricity “necessarily skyrockets” (h.t. Barry Obama).

  8. Climate change happens every day of your life. One thing for sure their is none of these brain deads like Kerry and Gore will change the temperture of the earth. So keep drinking the kool aide while they burn the hell out of fossil fuel, travel to all parts of the world and laugh while spreading BS and drinking their toddies.

  9. “Clean energy” = Chinese industry polluting another place so we don’t have to look at it and massive welfare to politically connected corporations.

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