Manager’s Report — February 2020

Carbon Policy, Cap and Trade. Here We Go Again.

Roger KlineLawmakers in Salem are again attempting to pass a bill that would make Oregon the second state after California to adopt an economywide cap-and-trade system to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

The bill has support from Gov. Kate Brown and the state house’s other top Democrats, but even its champions are treading carefully to protect the state’s economy as they aim to address climate change. Last session’s walkout by Republicans as well as the #TimberUnity efforts are clear examples as to why more thought had to be put into this legislation.

The proposed legislation has evolved yet again from an earlier version of cap-and-trade legislation known as the Clean Energy Jobs bill that lawmakers considered but failed to pass during a previous session.

As a reminder, the largest source of carbon emissions in Oregon isn’t the power sector, but the transportation sector. The overwhelming majority of your electricity is provided by near zero-carbon sources. Please see sources to learn more. Similarly, if you are considering a switch to an electric vehicle, please know our rates are favorable to charge that vehicle with carbon-free energy. We offer rebates on home-charging infrastructure and information to help with your decision Visit our Electric Vehicles page.

Northern Wasco County PUD is monitoring what cap-and-trade legislation could mean to the power sector and the overall economy in our region. We are optimistic there would not be unintended financial consequences to our community and stand ready to participate in the legislative process to ensure your consumer-owned electric service utility and our community isn’t negatively impacted.

Stay warm and stay safe,

Roger Kline
General Manager