The Cascade Policy Institute recently released a report on Oregon's renewable energy aims, and it dug up some interesting information. Namely, Oregon (and Portland) has set far-reaching goals and utterly failed to meet them.
In 2005, Governor Ted Kulongoski announced that by 2010, Oregon's stage agencies should receive 25 percent of their energy from renewable sources. Then, in 2007, he upped the ante—state agencies had the new goal of receiving 100 percent of their energy from renewable sources. But now that we're here, and the year is almost over, only one to two percent of the state government's energy is renewable, according to Anna Richter Taylor, the governor's communications director.
In 2001, the Portland City Council—still under the leadership of Mayor Vera Katz—approved a plan to reduce Portland's carbon emissions by 10 percent of their 1990 levels by 2010. The City of Portland was to be 100 percent reliant on renewable energy sources by 2010. And in a slightly better showing than the state, 9 percent of Portland's energy currently comes from renewable sources, according to David Tooze, senior energy specialist for the City.
The goals of Oregon Senate Bill 838 (that energy companies' source portfolios would be at least one-quarter renewable by 2025) are on a more realistic timeline, but it still makes me wonder how much of Oregon is just green talk.
For a walk down Wishful Thinking Lane, check out the details of Portland's 2001 plan. My favorite part is a TriMet pass for every household.