Policy Update: March 15, 2019

Policy Update

Things are heating up in Salem with committee deadlines coming up in a few weeks. And your help is once again needed!

OSEIA Bills:

Rooftop Solar Rebate – After an excellent public hearing on February 28th, HB 2618 is scheduled for a work session on March 26th in the House Energy and Environment Committee.  The committee will consider the amendment OSEIA and partner groups proposed which would create a set-aside in the program for projects benefiting low-income ratepayers, among other improvements. Thank you to everyone who submitted testimony – we had a great showing of support!

Improving the 1.5% for Green Energy Technology Requirement – OSEIA has been working to negotiate a compromise with opponents of the program.  Critical for OSEIA is having enforcement and including battery storage when paired with solar.  We are working to draft an amendment to Rep. Holvey’s bill in order to reach agreement.

YOUR HELP IS NEEDED! HB 2496 will have a hearing on March 26th and your testimony is needed.  Our opponents say that our concerns are overblown – please draft testimony to tell your personal story with a 1.5% project.  Were you ready to bid and the project said they weren’t going to fulfill the requirement? Was the 1.5% in the original RFP and then suddenly gone?  Tell your story!  Send your testimony to hee.exhibits@oregonlegislature.gov – make sure to say you support HB 2496 and underscore the need for enforcement of the law.

Priority bills:

EFSC siting bill – HB 2329 had a great hearing on February 28th and March 5th, with developers expressing their frustrations with EFSC’s cumbersome process. The Oregon Department of Energy, Renewable NW, OSEIA and CREA are working to find a compromise amendment that will be considered on the March 28th work session.  Thank you to all who submitted testimony.

Clean Energy Jobs – HB 2020 had a series of hearings around the state and OSEIA members testified at many of those hearings.  Thank you to all who submitted testimony.  The opposition is ramping up on this bill but so far leadership seems strong to move it forward.

Bad bills:

Burning trash is not renewable! OSEIA Executive Director testified against SB 451 which would make the Covanta waste incinerator eligible for RECs.  Not only does this go against the intent of the Renewable Portfolio Standard by including existing facilities instead of new facilities, but also doing so would weaken the REC market by having a flood of RECs from burning trash.  We are watching this bill closely to ensure that it doesn’t move forward.

OSEIA Oregon Solar