Oregon’s largest city and county take bold step towards 100% clean

This is what climate leadership looks like. The same day President Trump announced his disastrous decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement, Portland and Multnomah County became the first city and county in the Northwest to commit to 100% renewable energy.  

Oregon’s largest city and county passed the most ambitious clean energy resolutions in the country yesterday, with commitments to 100% clean electricity by 2035 and 100% clean community-wide energy by 2050. In taking bold action to solve the climate crisis, they also reaffirmed their commitment the Paris Agreement.  

Please share the news to let others know that progress is still happening. We just need to look beyond the U.S. government. 

The resolutions include strong language on accelerating the shift to electric cars, buses, and freight; prioritize equity and community-based renewable development; and take a strong stance against new gas-fired power plants and other fossil fuel development.   

With the U.S. government burying its head in the sand, the real action is at the state and local level. Last year, the City of Portland passed a resolution against fossil fuel infrastructure projects, and the Oregon Legislature was the first in the country to pass legislation to get coal out of its energy mix and double the state's renewable energy standard.  

These actions underscore the value of local climate leadership – already needed before yesterday’s federal action, and now all the more necessary.  

The Northwest is in a position to transition to 100% clean energy faster than anywhere else in the country. We’re proud to see Portland and Multnomah County leading the charge.

These actions can be a model for other jurisdictions in the Northwest to make strong clean energy commitments. It’s time for other cities and counties across the Northwest – and the country – to do the same.   

Author Bio

David Van't Hof

Senior Fellow, Climate Solutions

David is an attorney with his own policy and law practice in Portland Oregon. He focuses his practice in the areas of sustainability, clean technology, renewable energy and carbon regulation, drawing from his experience as Sustainability Policy Advisor to former Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski.  In that capacity, he led the state’s participation in the Western Climate Initiative and in developing the state’s nationally recognized climate change and renewable energy policies. David has served on numerous renewable energy and energy efficiency boards and works with others on a contract basis both providing legal and policy expertise.

David was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Senegal (1989-1991).  He earned his law degree (J.D., cum laude, 1994) from the University of Michigan Law School and his undergraduate degree (B.A. Philosophy 1988) from Trinity College, Hartford CT.

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