36 results for tag: climate


New Initiatives for Safe, Affordable, Climate-Friendly Homes and Buildings

The 2023 legislative session presents a vital opportunity to make progress in achieving our climate goals and protect families and communities from ever-worsening climate impacts. OEC is excited to support a “Building Resilience” policy package this session that will cut pollution and increase the climate resilience of our homes and buildings   Recognizing the vital need to transform and expand Oregon’s building stock in a way that maximizes climate, public health, affordability, and job creation benefits for Oregon, the 2022 legislature established the “Resilient, Efficient Buildings (REBuilding) Task Force.” The REBuilding ...

NW Natural Wants to Raise Rates (Again). This is What You Need to Know.

NW Natural, a utility company that sells fossil “natural” gas (e.g. methane), wants to raise prices for Oregon customers for a second year in a row. What they are planning to do with the money is, quite frankly, jaw-dropping, which is why OEC and a group of environmental and community-based organizations, represented by the Green Energy Institute at Lewis & Clark Law School and Earthjustice, are pushing back as formal intervenors in an ongoing public “rate case” proceeding. To get to the bottom of it, I sat down with Nora Apter, OEC’s Climate Program Director, to learn more about what NW Natural is doing and why their customers–or ...

Climate Change and Agriculture: How are they connected and what’s to be done?

What is climate change and how does it work? We’ve all heard the phrase “climate change,” but what does that phrase mean? The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) defines climate change as “a long-term (decades to centuries) change in any of a number of environmental conditions for a given place and time—such as temperature, rainfall, humidity, cloudiness, wind, and air circulation patterns.” So any shift in weather patterns lasting for a prolonged period of time can be called climate change. Today most people who say “climate change” are referring to the steady well-documented increases in Earth’s temperature ...

No time to burn: let’s keep the future of gas short in Oregon 

By: Nora Apter, the Climate Program Director for Oregon Environmental Council. Greer Ryan, Oregon Clean Buildings Policy Manager with Climate Solutions. When it comes to global warming pollution, we’ve heard a lot about the dangers of too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. But did you know that methane, the primary ingredient in so-called “natural” gas, is approximately 86 times more potent than carbon dioxide at trapping heat in the atmosphere over a 20 year timeframe? Fossil “natural” gas is far from being the safe, clean product that gas utilities and fossil fuel companies claim. In reality, gas is not good for you or the ...

Building for a Better Future

Right now, there is an important conversation happening in Oregon, and around the country, about buildings. The buildings in which we live and work are a critical piece of the climate puzzle. They are both vital to reducing climate change causing fossil fuels and our first line of defense against climate harms like extreme heat, wildfire smoke, and air pollution.  Buildings are the second largest–and growing–source of climate pollution in Oregon, responsible for 34 percent of the state’s total greenhouse gas emissions. This is due to the fossil fuels used for electricity to power our homes and buildings, and the fossil gas piped in for heating ...

EVs Are Not Just for Urban Commuters

The transition from gas to electric vehicles is now well underway. From electric cars, trucks, and busses, to e-bikes, e-scooters, and personal wheeled devices of all kinds, there are more and more electric options for getting around town. This transition is exciting to see because it’s essential to reducing our reliance on fossil fuels and battling climate change.  But what if “town” isn’t where you’re trying to get around? There are more electric vehicle (EV) models introduced all the time, but many people still have questions about whether an EV makes sense for the everyday needs of Oregon’s rural and agricultural communities which ...

Life hack: save money and the planet at the same time

If you've lived in Oregon for the last couple years, you are well aware of the urgent threat climate change poses to our communities, public health, and way of life. We have all seen and experienced first hand the devastating and deadly climate-fueled wildfires and temperature extremes that have ravaged our state in recent seasons.  Two recent reports from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) underscore Oregon’s climate experience, documenting the impacts of climate change and the danger of inaction, and laying out key policy solutions to limit warming and avoid catastrophic climate impacts. The IPCC Climate ...

Heat Pumps: They Heat. They Cool. They burn no fossil fuel.

Heat Pumps are a relatively new way to heat and cool indoor spaces. There’s a variety of different models that can work for apartments, offices, and for single-family homes. Three of our staff sat down for a conversation about the options for single-family homes.* OEC’s Deputy Director of Philanthropy, Teke Dillender is considering a heat pump for her home. Joel Schoening, OEC Director of Communications is about to have a heat pump installed and Sara Wright, OEC’s Transportation Program Director, already has a heat pump. Here’s our chat.    Teke Dillender (TD): So, why did you start looking into heat pumps, and what was it that ...

Something big on climate will happen in 2020

Oregon Environmental Council, through a coalition of organizations, has filed ballot proposals for the 2020 general election that will place our state on a path toward a 100% Clean Economy and 100% Clean Electricity for everyone. Tomorrow, we formally launch our campaign. Be the first to follow 100% Ready for Clean Air: FACEBOOK | TWITTER Oregon is ready to transition off fossil fuels and build a 100% clean economy. Oregon must do our part as a leader to protect the natural heritage of clean air and clean water we’re so proud of. Seven of 10 Oregonians continue supporting a cap-and-trade policy, yet we can’t guarantee the state Legisla...

Oregonians feel climate disruption, unfinished business

Climate disruption, along with unchecked air and water pollution from dirty energy sources, is harming Oregonians, and for too long, our leaders have put off addressing climate change in a comprehensive way.