Want to take climate action with Solar power?
Check out these links and resources--thanks to Ken Barker.
- Existing Rules and Policies Promoting Renewable Energy:
- Oregon State-Renewable Energy: https://www.oregon.gov/energy/energy-oregon/Pages/Renewable-Energy.aspx
- Governor Browns Executive order (March 10, 2020) Carbon Policy https://www.oregon.gov/gov/Pages/carbonpolicy_climatechange.aspx
- Portland Climate Action Plan: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/bps/index.cfm?&c=49989 Portland 2030 Vision plan: https://www.portland.gov/sites/default/files/2020-01/portland2030-avisionforthefuture_visionpdx.pdf
- https://electrifynow.net/: (Based in Oregon) Promotes Renewable Energy: Hydrogen, Solar, Wind etc. Energy trust of Oregon (https://www.energytrust.org/ ) provides renewable energy resources, contractors. Offers a free energy audit of your home and business.
- Solar Oregon ( http://solaroregon.org/ ) Resource for Solar energy
- Bonneville Environmental Foundation ( http://www.b-e-f.org/ )
3. Business, Residential & Individual Investment in Solar:
i. Put solar panels on your building
- Must have sufficient solar exposure on south facing roof ( minimal shade).
- Your roof needs to be structurally strong enough to withstand weight of solar panels (Most buildings built after 1995 have enough structural strength
- Possible Financial assistance: Federal tax credit of 30% up through 2022; Oregon rebate max. $5,000
- Resource assistance (referral to contractors and financial assistance: Energy Trust of Oregon https://www.energytrust.org/; Solar Oregon http://solaroregon.org/
ii. Subscribe to Community Solar
Buy your energy from an existing solar array:
- Oregon senate bill 1547 (Jan. 2020) is what started community solar. Any Electric rate payer in Portland General
- Electric and Pacific Power can invest in community solar (rate payer discounts of 5% normal rate payers; ~ 20% for low income)
iii. Private Community Solar arrays (available for general public to buy into):
- https://www.oregonshines.com/ Sells shares in Oregon Community solar arrays. May take up to one year to get set up with a specific community solar array.
- https://www.communityenergyproject.org/ ; non-profit to help low income people have affordable access to solar energy.
- https://www.oregoncsp.org/p/home ; Non-profit that works with Utility companies (PGE, PPL, Idaho power) to promote community solar arrays
- https://www.oregoncsp.org/p/ProjectFinder ; Lists Community Solar array projects that you can buy solar power from.
iv. Public Utility Community Solar arrays (available for general public to buy into):
- Pacific Power (https://www.pacificpower.net/ ) customers can do this via the https://www.pacificpower.net/savings-energy-choices/blue-sky-renewable-energy.html program for residential and business
- Business PPL customers can do this via the Blue Sky Power program
- Portland General Electric (PGE) https://portlandgeneral.com/ customers can do this via the https://portlandgeneral.com/energy-choices/renewable-power program for residential and business
- Business PGE customers can do this via the Green Future Impact program
Encourage/Promote Community solar arrays to be installed on roof tops (especially large buildings) and utility easements to minimize converting natural/agricultural lands that act as carbon sinks to large solar array farms.
v. Invest in Community Solar
Crowdfunding specific projects
http://oregoncleanpower.coop/individuals/ (Minimal investment $1,000) Investments allow solar installation on non-profits (e.g. churches, low income housing)
vi. Individual action regarding Solar on Your Home
Put up lawn signs saying your Home is powered by solar-saving you $$$; Your Home is Net Zero energy.
- Business, Residential & Individual investment in Solar and Energy Efficiency
Obtain free energy audit by Energy Trust of Oregon https://www.energytrust.org/ (additional resource: Greenhousegas.org )
- Find recommendations and possible financing, credits and rebates
- Determine whether replacing your lights with LED is cost effective
- Determine whether adding insulation in your Ceiling, Floors and Walls is cost effective
- Determine whether replacing your windows with double pane windows is cost effective
- Determine whether replacing your appliances, furnace, water heater, etc. is cost effective
- Get into Action to make your home more energy efficient
5. Schools and Government Buildings investment in Solar and Energy Efficiency
Funding sources for Schools:
- Energy Trust of Oregon (has incentives); Grants, PTO’s Oregon bill SB1149 (https://www.oregon.gov/energy/energy-oregon/Pages/SB1149.aspx)
- Senate Bill 1149 directed Oregon's two largest utilities, Portland General Electric and Pacific Power , to collect a "public purpose charge" from their customers.
- Assist schools with financing: work with PTO’s, https://www.energytrust.org/ ); Solar Oregon http://solaroregon.org/
- Local solar can be redundant energy source in case power grid goes down (due to Winds, Fires)
- Help Enhance City and County Building Codes
Submit public comments regarding building codes that promote:
- Each new buildings’ code should encourage buildings to be constructed with Net-zero energy use to promote buildings which create as much energy as they consume over year.
- Lighting should be highly efficient lighting such as Light Emitting Diodes (LED) (or Halogen Incandescent Lights, Compact Fluorescent Lamps (CFL) if more efficient).
- Skylights should be installed to let in natural light.
- Adequate insulation should be installed in ALL walls (>=R-40), floors (>=R-38) and ceilings (>=R-60) to minimize need to heat and cool.
- Roofs need to be structurally strong to be able to hold solar panels or green roofs.
- Energy smart meters should be installed to encourage energy use reduction and use of energy during low demand times.
- ALL appliances should be energy and water efficient.
Other ideas? Share them in the chat.