Governor Kitzhaber today released a draft 10-Year Energy Action Plan that lays out comprehensive strategies to align the state's economic objectives with its efficiency, renewable energy, transportation and carbon reduction goals. The draft plan, which will be open for a 60-day public review and comment period, emphasizes priorities that help deliver affordable and reliable energy while getting Oregonians back to work on energy-related projects across the state.
"This plan is a central component of my strategy to position Oregon to be more competitive in the global economy of the 21st century," said Governor Kitzhaber. "It provides a framework to move Oregon beyond a boom/bust economic cycle that depletes our natural capital and leaves us vulnerable to fluctuations in global markets, and move us toward a future where our state is a leader in energy efficiency, home-grown renewable energy resources, and clean energy employment."
The plan presents specific initiatives, to be implemented over the short- and long-term, focused on energy efficiency, clean energy infrastructure development, and transportation improvements that rely on cleaner-burning fuels and more efficient vehicles. Specifically, it relies on three core strategies where the state can play a lead role in innovation, policy development and market transformation:
1. Maximizing energy efficiency and conservation to meet 100 percent of new electricity load growth.
2. Enhancing clean energy infrastructure development by removing finance and regulatory barriers.
3. Accelerating the market transition to a more efficient, cleaner transportation system.
The Governor's plan calls for building retrofits and efficiency improvements on up to four million square feet of state-owned buildings and office space to improve their energy performance and help drive private sector investment. It also proposes streamlined permitting for renewable energy facilities to provide more certainty for companies considering investments in Oregon and recommends workforce development initiatives to ensure Oregonians have the skills and training necessary to land clean energy jobs.
"Energy is the issue of our time -- both globally and here in Oregon," said Governor Kitzhaber. "No single issue will have a greater impact on our state's economy, environment and quality of life in the coming decade, and I am committed to pursuing the policy, programs and practices needed to ensure we shape a prosperous and sustainable future."
The draft 10-Year Energy Action Plan was shaped by input, advice, and technical expertise from hundreds of Oregonians and organizations. A citizen task force met regularly for six months, submitting nearly 200 recommendations that were incorporated into the plan. Public input will continue to guide the effort, with a 60-day public comment period ending on July 31, 2012, and public meetings scheduled around the state.
For more information and to review and comment on the draft plan:http://oregon.gov/energy/Pages/Ten_Year_Energy_Plan_Draft.aspx.