city skyline with text overlay "clean and safe buildings"
The case for clean, safe, and all-electric buildings
Washington and Oregon need to join the movement towards clean, safe, all-electric buildings—and we need to do it soon. Look out for more information on the case for all-electric buildings and the policy solutions that can get us there in the Northwest.
Clean buildings

Heating and powering our homes and businesses generates a substantial amount of our climate-changing pollution; our built environment is a major contributor to global warming.  If our homes and buildings were carbon-free and energy efficient, we would significantly reduce our climate pollution, drastically cut energy costs for owners and renters, and improve air quality where we live and work. 

For example, in Washington State, emissions from buildings are growing at a faster rate than any other source of carbon pollution, with this increase largely attributable to the use of fossil gas in homes and buildings.   Combusting fossil gas in homes and buildings is not only a significant contributor to climate change, but also poses significant health risks for our communities, children, and other vulnerable populations.   

Indoor air quality issues are particularly concentrated for low-income residents in smaller units with poor ventilation. Communities of color are already disproportionately impacted by outdoor air pollution, and should not continue to be disproportionately harmed by poor indoor air quality as well. Gas appliances also worsen our outdoor air quality.  For example, California’s residential appliances releasing more than two times as many NOx emissions as all of their gas power plants combined, and commercial gas appliances releasing just as much NOx pollution as all of California’s cars.

Many cities in the region and around the country are increasingly looking at ensuring all new buildings are electric as a key cost-effective pathway for achieving their local or state greenhouse emissions goals. Electrifying buildings is critical to addressing climate change, but it is also achievable, affordable, safe, and creates a more resilient energy system.

We are working with partners to move toward electrifying our buildings for heating, cooling and cooking.  We can also construct homes and buildings that get all their energy from sustainable sources, and even produce as much energy as they use — net zero energy buildings. 

row of homes with red text overlay "healthy and safe buildings"

Pollution is coming… from inside the house

Washington and Oregon can do better to protect residents by creating clean, safe, all-electric buildings. In this second part of our blog series on all-electric buildings, we outline the health and safety risks of using gas, and detail how all-electric buildings can be the climate and health solution we need.

Climate Solutions Annual Report 2020 with orange sunrays and white script overlay

The Path Forward on Climate Change in the Northwest

Is there room for climate action in the coming year, given all our other challenges? You bet there is. (We're also looking back—read our Climate Action Report 2020!)

city skyline with text overlay "clean and safe buildings"

The case for clean, safe, and all-electric buildings

Washington and Oregon need to join the movement towards clean, safe, all-electric buildings—and we need to do it soon. Look out for more information on the case for all-electric buildings and the policy solutions that can get us there in the Northwest.

Red skies above smoke stacks and pollution, indicative of the hellscape fortold from runaway climate change

Cap-and-reduce: What’s at stake as DEQ kicks off program design

One major component of the Oregon Climate Action Plan is a directive for the state Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to set up a new program to “cap and reduce” climate-harming pollution from Oregon’s large polluters.

house with solar panels

Clean, climate-friendly buildings can help Oregon build back better

We can rebuild and recover in a more just, clean, healthy, and smart way—while creating lots of high quality green jobs along the way. One of those climate-smart and equitable solutions to build back better than before is right in front of us, and all around us: our homes and other buildings.

text over faded windmill aerial shot

Climate Leaders Live!

Join us throughout the year and learn more about real climate solutions.

Climate Leaders Live: Building our Clean Energy Future

Our first Climate Leaders Live event featured Lucas Joppa (Chief Environmental Officer, Microsoft) and Rep. Laurie Jinkins (Speaker, Washington State House of Representatives) discussing climate progress and clean energy.

Oregon Capitol in springtime

Oregon fills leadership gap on parallel COVID, climate crises

Global warming has not paused to respect social distancing during these ‘corona times.’ However, in early March, Oregon Governor Kate Brown delivered one of the country's strongest Executive Orders on climate in early March, now called the “Oregon Climate Action Plan.”

The good, the bad, and the opportunity for climate action in Washington

Climate policy is not a single undertaking. We need many solutions working together, building on the success of clean electricity to end our reliance on fossil fuels in our buildings and our transportation. 

Let's say yes to healthier buildings for a healthier climate

With SB 5293/HB 1257, Washington can reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, create jobs, and make buildings healthier to live and work in. 

row of homes with red text overlay "healthy and safe buildings"

Pollution is coming… from inside the house

Washington and Oregon can do better to protect residents by creating clean, safe, all-electric buildings. In this second part of our blog series on all-electric buildings, we outline the health and safety risks of using gas, and detail how all-electric buildings can be the climate and health solution we need.
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