By Brittany van der Salm | CNA board vice chair
The Concordia Neighborhood Association’s general meeting March 1 drew a number of speakers addressing a variety of topics, including the following:
Neighbors for Clean Air [NCA]
Morgan Towle noted NCA has been operating in Portland for 12 years. “Big diesel” is a major pollution issue for Portland, she said, and Multnomah County is one of the top five counties in the country for high diesel pollution.
NCA claims that 65% of this comes from construction and off-road equipment. Diesel vehicles used in construction release particulate matter into the air that causes health issues, Towle said.
Towle said that Oregon House Bill 2396, the Indirect Source Bill, is up for consideration in the 2023 legislative session. If passed, the bill would regulate indirect sources of diesel pollution. HB 3158 uses state funding to incentivize transition away from diesel.
Oregon Community Solar Program
Sean Micken, who works for Oregon Shines, said the OCSP was written into state law in 2016 and allows anyone who buys power, regardless of where they live, to purchase solar energy that is harvested right here in Oregon. Subscription costs vary by use and type of plan. Customers of PGE, Pacific Power and Idaho Power can receive utility-bill credits in exchange for buying or leasing part of a community solar project here in Oregon.
In a followup email from Oregon Shines, Field Manager Don Evans noted: “[The Oregon Community Solar Program] was created to ‘make solar energy available to customers across the state who previously did not have access’ by connecting PGE and Pacific Power customers to solar energy projects without having to install panels on their own roofs.
“You can rent or own your home, and there is no cost to sign up, to participate or to cancel. There is no change in billing, and by law, consumers are required to be incentivized for participating. The credit creates a guaranteed 5% savings on subscribed energy while low-to- moderate income residents will save 40%!
“Oregon Shines connects residents, businesses, municipalities and other organizations to community solar projects, in their utility territory, allowing them to save money and gain access to clean energy. For more information, and to sign up, visit OregonShines.com.”
Brittany is a board member of the CNA, and has lived in the neighborhood since 2019. She works as a Medicaid disability policy consultant with a national nonprofit firm. Brittany loves to bake and bird watch.