Oregon

OREGON

In the late winter of 1859, Oregon became the 33rd state of the U.S. Today, with 4 million people over 98,000 square miles Oregon is the ninth largest and 27th most populous U.S. state. Home to both the deepest lake and the largest mushroom , it is known for its extremely diverse and famously beautiful terrain. By the 1830s the Oregon Trail had already established a direct route to the Pacific Northwest, a route the U.S. Government encouraged settler colonialists to travel in order to strengthen claims to the territory. White settlers began to arrive in large number in the early 1840s. For most of history, Oregon wasn’t divided by lines on a map. It contained four distinct regions that varied in terrain, climate and resources. Native Americans had been maintaining the landscape for millennia with more than 60 tribes living throughout Oregon before colonization in the 19th century. Nine tribes are federally recognized in the state today.

The Oregon Climate Change Research Institute identified water resources, coastal issues, and forest ecosystems as the three main climate change challenges facing Oregon. Summer drought is expected to increase by 50% by 2050 as the state becomes both warmer and muggier. In June, 2021, forecasts for a heat wave of historic proportions in the Pacific Northwest solidified, with a consensus among meteorologists that the summer of 2021 would rank among the most extreme events the region has ever seen. This turned out to be true as more than 100 people died from the heat.  If wildfires captured everyone’s attention in 2020 as more than 10% of Oregon’s citizens had to evacuate, by October 2021 more than 800,000 acres had burned in the state.

Flows in rivers and streams are increasing during late winter and early spring and decreasing during the summer. By 2050, Oregon’s snowpack is expected to melt three to four weeks earlier, which decreases the amount of water flow in the summers. On the coast, Oregon will be facing an additional 6 inches of sea level rise within the next sixteen years. The waters off of the coast are also particularly vulnerable to acidification, one of the oceanic side-effects of excessive carbon-emissions, posing an urgent threat to those ecosystems. This changing climactic suitability, as well as the disturbances like wildfires, drought, insects, and disease, will drastically shift Oregon’s forest landscape.

In 2006, former Governor Kulongoski took action to prepare Oregon for climate-related challenges by creating the Governor’s Climate Change Integration Group. This led to the state’s publishing of the Oregon Climate Change Adaptation Framework in 2010. In the decade since, Oregon has enacted a slate of legislation at both the local and state levels addressing a variety of specific issues. They have already surpassed the Renewable Portfolio Standard set in 2016, establishing a 50% by 2040. By 2017 an Oregon Climate and Health Resilience Plan outlined a set of recommendations for the State’s Public Health Division.

In 2019, more than one half of their generated electricity came from hydroelectric power. Natural gas accounts for about one third, coal’s share was only 4%, with  nonhydroelectric renewable resources, including wind, biomass, solar, and geothermal power, providing the rest.

In the spring of 2021 and under orders from Gov. Kate Brown, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality developed a new set of rules that would cap greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels and reduce them over time. The proposed Climate Protection Program would cut emissions from suppliers of gasoline, diesel, propane, kerosene and natural gas 80% by 2050. By capping emissions from fuels, it targets the state’s largest source of carbon dioxide emissions; cars, trucks and other forms of transportation made up 36% of emissions in 2019. DEQ is taking public comments on the proposed rules through Oct. 25.

In June, 2021, a bill committing electricity providers to deliver 100% clean electricity to Oregon customers by 2040 and prohibiting new or expanded natural gas-fired power plants passed both the House and Senate of the Oregon State Legislative Assembly. When signed into law on July 27, 2021 by Gov. Kate Brown, Oregon became the 8th state (following Hawaii, California, Washington, New Mexico, New York, Maine, Virginia and the District of Columbia) to adopt similar goals to reach 100% clean or renewable energy, according to the NCSL.

Oregon is one of twenty-four states, plus Puerto Rico, participating in the U.S. Climate Alliance, a bipartisan coalition of governors committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the goals of the Paris Agreement.

CURRENT NEWS

Oregon receiving $38M to address growing ‘wildfire crisis’

By Michaela Bourgeois 03/05/24
Oregon is set to receive over $38 million in federal funding to reduce the threat of wildfires in three targeted areas across the state.
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Oregon’s Western Cascades may see more wildfires

By Meira Gebel 02/28/24
The wet, cool forests along Oregon's Western Cascades could see at least twice as much wildfire activity in the next three decades, according to a new simulation led by Oregon State University researchers.
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Oregon researchers hope to provide new tools to help wine growers address climate change, smoke

By Anna King 02/27/24
Vineyard managers could spray the coatings onto their grapes to protect the fruit from any smoke flavors. Oregon State University researchers are developing the new coatings.
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How climate change will impact Oregon’s air quality

By Meira Gebel and Andrew Freedman 02/15/24
Air quality in Oregon, and across the Pacific Northwest, is poised to worsen over the next three decades due to an increase in prolonged wildfire seasons and persistent drought, a new report suggests.
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BOEM finalizes two Oregon offshore wind energy areas with up to 2.4 GW in capacity

By Diana DiGangi 02/14/24
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management announced Tuesday that it has made two final wind energy area, or WEA, designations offshore Oregon, totaling around 195,012 acres and offering up to 2.4 GW of potential capacity.
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Indictment of US Forest Service ‘Burn Boss’ in Oregon Could Chill ‘Good Fires’ Across the Country

By Grant Stringer 02/08/24
A “burn boss” with the U.S. Forest Service is facing unprecedented criminal charges for an escaped prescribed burn in rural Oregon, which may complicate nationwide goals to set low-intensity fires that can thin out excess…
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What this winter weather can tell us about Oregon’s climate and vice versa

By Paul Marshall 01/20/24
Tens of thousands of people in Oregon and Southwest Washington lost power. More than a dozen people have died in Oregon because of weather-related incidents. We had snow and then ice and then ice again.…
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Climate-friendly homes offer Grand Ronde’s tribal elders affordability and comfort against climate change

By Monica Samayoa 01/17/24
In a corner lot between Highway 22 and Grand Ronde Road sit 24 newly built single-family homes. These homes look like many that are being built in Oregon right now as the state tries to…
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Federal judge in Oregon denies efforts to dismiss climate lawsuit filed by young people

By Rachael McDonald 01/04/24
A federal judge in Eugene, Oregon, has denied U.S. Department of Justice motions to dismiss a climate lawsuit brought by 21 youth plaintiffs. This could clear the way for the case to finally go to…
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Court rules Oregon’s landmark climate change regulations invalid in case brought by gas utilities

By Alex Baumhardt 12/20/23
Oregon’s second highest court ruled in favor of natural gas utilities seeking to invalidate the state’s landmark climate program.
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Climate change, drought, wildfires reduce value of private forestland in the West by billions

By Alex Baumhardt 11/27/23
Investing in private timberland in the West has become increasingly risky, according to a new study from Oregon State University researchers, with values declining by billions of dollars in the last two decades.
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Climate change is hastening the demise of Pacific Northwest forests

By Nathan Gilles 11/16/23
Its foliage, normally soft and green, is tough and brown or missing altogether. Nonetheless, the tree’s reddish bark, swooping branches and thick, conical base identify it as the Pacific Northwest’s iconic western red cedar.
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PLANS TO ACCELERATE RENEWABLES

Climate change resilience and your drinking water

03/21/24
Climate change is here and now. Here in the Pacific Northwest, we can expect to see warmer temperatures, drier summers, and more frequent extreme weather events like heat waves and wildfires. These changing conditions require…

First Two Offshore Wind Energy Areas Selected Along Oregon Coast – Public Comment Open Now

03/05/24
Since HB 3375 was enacted in 2021, Oregon has been focused on identifying key locations for the installation of floating wind turbines off of the coast of Oregon, with the goal of generating approximately three…

Legislature passes bill to rid Oregon’s Public Employee Retirement System of coal investments

03/05/24
A bill directing the state Treasury to essentially divest Oregon’s Public Employee Retirement System of nearly $1 billion in investments in coal mining and energy companies awaits the signature of Gov. Tina Kotek.

PGE eyes big solar, plus storage, at gas plant site

03/05/24
Seven years after it abandoned a plan to expand natural gas generation in Eastern Oregon, Portland General Electric is maneuvering to increase the scale of a possible solar power plant there.

Portland Clean Energy Fund Surplus Sparks Debate Over Voter Intent and City Needs

03/03/24
With the Portland Clean Energy Fund amassing unexpected millions, discussions intensify around adhering to voter intentions versus addressing city budget constraints. Advocates for retaining surplus funds for climate initiatives argue this aligns with the 2018…

Portland General Electric proposes 2025 rate hike as many still reel from January bump

03/01/24
Portland General Electric announced Thursday it would like to increase average rates for customers by 7.4% in 2025, following the historic rate increases those customers only recently started paying.

With limited resources, a small Oregon town plans for climate change

02/22/24
One of the most iconic landmarks in downtown Grants Pass, Oregon, is a 100-year-old sign that arcs over the main street with the phrase “It’s the Climate” scrawled across it.

Over 190,000 Acres Allotted for Offshore Wind Energy in Oregon

02/20/24
The United States Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) has finalized two wind energy areas (WEAs) off the coast of Oregon covering about 195,000 acres and offering a potential 2.4 gigawatts (GW) of power, the…

Oregon’s Rural Power Utility Has Become a Big Polluter

02/20/24
The rolling hills along the Columbia River in northeastern Oregon boast golden fields and farms, quiet valleys and rippling creeks — and very few people.

Renewable energy prototype revealed as unidentified floating object in Puget Sound

02/20/24
There have been numerous sightings of an unidentified floating object in the Puget Sound area.

One Small Town Plans for Climate Change

By Claire Carlson 02/14/24
One of the most iconic landmarks in downtown Grants Pass, Oregon, is a 100-year-old sign that arcs over the main street with the phrase “It’s the Climate” scrawled across it.

With Limited Resources, One Small Town Plans for Climate Change

02/14/24
One of the most iconic landmarks in downtown Grants Pass, Oregon, is a 100-year-old sign that arcs over the main street with the phrase “It’s the Climate” scrawled across it.

US Finalizes Two Offshore Wind Energy Areas in Oregon

02/13/24
The Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) on Tuesday finalized two wind energy areas (WEAs) in the offshore Oregon region, aligning with government goals to deploy 30 gigawatts of offshore wind power along U.S. coastlines…

Avangrid and Amazon Expand U.S. Partnership with 98.4 MW Wind Project in Oregon

02/13/24
“We are proud to have signed this agreement with Amazon, a company that shares our commitment to accelerating the global transition to renewable energy,” said Pedro Azagra, Avangrid CEO. “With projects like this, we are…

Portland could backfill budget gaps with funds voters designated for climate response

02/13/24
The Portland Clean Energy Fund was created by a voter-approved ballot measure in 2018 that passed with 65% of the vote. It has been celebrated as a first-of-its-kind environmental justice and climate action program created…

Amazon Web Services signs 98.4MW wind PPA in Oregon

02/12/24
Avangrid, Inc., part of the Iberdrola Group, has announced the signing of a new power purchase agreement (PPA) with Amazon to offtake from a repowered wind farm located in Gilliam County, Oregon.

AWS in your community: Here’s what’s happening in eastern Oregon

02/10/24
Amazon is bringing more clean energy to eastern Oregon communities with a $1.2 million contribution to fund a community solar energy program.

Amazon, in deal with Avangrid, signs its biggest OR renewables deal ever

02/09/24
Amazon has contracted to buy electricity from a wind farm in eastern Oregon, where its growing data center presence has contributed to a dramatic increase in a local power utility's climate emissions.

Amazon will start buying clean power for Oregon data centers

02/09/24
Amazon announced Friday it will begin buying clean electricity to help power its eastern Oregon data centers, marking its first big step toward renewable energy in the state. The company will also contribute $1.2 million…

Oregon commission approves ‘carbon capture’ fund for state’s natural and working lands

01/30/24
The Oregon Climate Action Commission on Friday approved $10 million in investments with the goal to reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions.

State moves to restore, reinstate climate change regulations derailed by natural gas lawsuit

01/22/24
State environmental regulators will redo the year-long process of rulemaking and adopting landmark climate change regulations that were enacted three years ago.

‘A planet in peril’: OSU researchers unveil path to fight climate change

01/11/24
An international team of scientists led by two Oregon State University researchers, are calling for a different pathway to mitigate climate change that will also address social injustice.

Officials, locals worry about foggy federal plans for wind farms off Oregon Coast

01/04/24
The sun was peeking through the clouds during a short break in the rain as Nick Edwards was making his way along the Charleston Marina. Edwards fished along the Oregon Coast for more than 40…

Pacific Northwest could experience ‘energy droughts,’ study finds

01/01/24
Drops in solar and wind energy production, also known as energy droughts, could potentially last for hours in the Pacific Northwest. New research is aimed at helping grid planners better understand these energy gaps and…

GET a GRIP: A Path to More Renewable Energy on the Grid

12/19/23
If near-term transmission capacity expansion is on your holiday wish list, Christmas has officially come early. On November 14, the Department of Energy (DOE) opened applications for a second batch of grants for the Grid…

Portland’s clean energy fund expected to raise additional $540M over next 5 years

12/13/23
Portland’s cash-rich fund that aims to bankroll clean energy projects and jobs could see a staggering $540 million in unexpected revenue in the next five years, according to the latest city forecast.

Nature Unites Us: Conservation Impact in Oregon

12/03/23
As we work to address the planet’s greatest needs, we recognize that the well-being of nature and people cannot be separated, and how we work is as important as what we achieve. We are committed…

Solar adoption in Oregon rose sharply over past decade

11/26/23
The Oregon Department of Energy’s recently published solar dashboard shows how solar-generated electricity, both at utility scale and rooftop solar, has grown throughout the state since 1986. The dashboard also shows which counties are producing…

Oregon utilities, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs get $450M to improve electric grid

10/23/23
Two Oregon utilities and the Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs will receive nearly $450 million from the federal government to modernize the region’s power grid and incorporate a growing amount of renewable energy.

Oregon is powered by more renewable energy than ever before, has room to grow

10/11/23
The past decade has seen exciting progress in clean energy. America produces more than three times as much power from the sun, the wind and the earth as we did in 2013, with growth in…

Portland approves 5-year, $750 million climate action plan

09/28/23
The Portland Clean Energy Fund’s (PCEF) Climate Investment Plan aims to reduce carbon emissions and ensure residents are better prepared for climate change, with a focus on helping communities of color and low-income residents. The…

Governor Kotek signs major bill package to address climate change, invest in clean energy

08/01/23
In recent years, Oregon has become a national leader in the fight against climate change by passing ambitious policies, including setting goals to achieve 100% clean electricity by 2040, making renewable energy and clean transportation…

Portland begins to check things off its 47-item action plan to slow climate change, report says

07/20/23
Portland’s multibureau climate action work plan is off to a slow but steady start and could meet most of its goals by the end of 2025, a new report says.

New Canyonville Solar Project to Benefit Oregon Residents and Agriculture

06/09/23
SolRiver Capital, a leading renewable energy investment firm, is excited to unveil plans for the Canyonville Solar Project, which will combine sustainable energy generation with agricultural practices. Canyonville will be the first Oregon Community Solar…

PacifiCorp outlines how it will meet Oregon climate emissions reduction targets

06/05/23
Berkshire Hathaway-owned PacifiCorp says systemwide reductions will get it a big part of the way to emissions cuts required in Oregon.

Pacific Power submits to PUC inaugural plan to achieve net-zero emissions in Oregon by 2040

05/31/23
Pacific Power released plans Wednesday to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions for all electricity sold to Oregon consumers by 2040, while significantly enhancing customer and community participation in decarbonization efforts.

Equitably fight climate change, inform Portland how to spend $750 million

05/23/23
The Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund is projected to spend an estimated $750 million during the next five years to support communities most affected by climate change.

Oregon welcomes battery storage additions to advance renewable energy

05/03/23
Portland General Electric will procure 400 megawatts of new battery storage projects to advance renewable energy in the region.

Portland is getting the second-biggest battery storage facility in the US that could create enough electricity to power 260,000 homes

04/28/23
Portland General Electric, the utility serving Portland, Oregon, announced Friday it is putting in the second-largest battery storage installation in the United States, at 400 MW of power. The significance of such projects is they…

This couple spent $48,000 to convert their Portland, Oregon, home to ‘net zero’: ‘The future is efficient and renewable’

04/22/23
When Ryan Shanahan, 41, decided to buy a house in Portland, Oregon, he knew from the start that he wanted his future home to be “net zero.”

Hundreds of Portland students demand Oregon climate change action

04/21/23
Hundreds of Portland students and residents took to the streets Friday to demand that Gov. Tina Kotek do more to address climate change in Oregon. Youth activists walked out of 27 schools to meet at…

Friday’s ‘Youth Climate Strike’ will focus on Kotek’s lack of action

04/20/23
The kids are back. And they’re (still) pissed. The fourth annual Portland Youth Climate Strike will start at the Oregon Convention Center plaza Friday. Climate activists of all ages will meet at 10:00 am at…

Portland shelter tackles both the housing crisis and climate change

04/20/23
Path Home is a shelter and transitional housing village in the Lents neighborhood. It was designed to be green and energy efficient.

Here’s where renewable power is increasing (and where it’s not)

04/14/23
Despite supply-chain problems amid the lingering effects of the pandemic, 2022 saw major increases in solar and wind power in the United States, though that growth varied by state, according to a report by a…

Amazon claims to champion clean energy. So why did it just help kill an emissions bill in Oregon?

04/11/23
In rural Oregon, a small electric utility called Umatilla Electric Cooperative used to rely mainly on clean hydropower. It had a small carbon footprint. But when large data centers came to the area—built by companies…

‘Greening Ambassadors’ will be hired to help east Portland battle climate change

04/07/23
As the impacts of climate change have stomped into Portland, it’s becoming very clear that east Portland bears the brunt. Because there are fewer parks, fewer trees, and more roads and other paved surfaces, our…

In eastern Oregon, Amazon is working with a local utility to power AWS data centers with clean energy

04/04/23
Amazon is committed to reaching net-zero carbon by 2040, and—as part of that commitment—we’re on a path to powering our operations with 100% renewable energy by 2025. As of today, Amazon has already reached more…

Amazon fights Oregon data center clean energy bill

03/29/23
Amid heated debate over Oregon legislation that would require data centers to use clean energy, data center operators have been conspicuously quiet.

Renewables top coal in U.S. for first time in 2022. Where does Oregon stand?

03/28/23
The U.S. achieved a milestone last year when renewable resources provided more electricity than coal for the first time. How did Oregon fit into the picture?

PacifiCorp wants more time for first Oregon clean energy plan; groups push back

03/27/23
Stakeholders say there is an “urgent need to keep moving forward on these plans.”

Oregon could tighten climate regulations for data centers, cryptocurrency farms

03/22/23
Lawmakers are trying to close a loophole for data centers and force some of Oregon’s biggest carbon emitters to move to cleaner sources of power.

Oregon’s clean energy goals

03/15/23
Oregon has adopted ambitious mandates to reduce the state’s carbon footprint and expand reliance on clean energy, including wind, solar and battery storage. Here are key policies driving the changes:

Climate Change and the Housing Crisis are Burdening Portland’s Emergency Shelter System

03/13/23
During the many extreme weather events the Portland area has faced over the last several years, from heat domes to snowstorms, Multnomah County’s emergency weather shelters have been a lifeline for the area’s housing insecure…

After Marking a Century, What’s Next for Oregon State Parks?

03/09/23
ince Oregon’s first state park was established 101 years ago, visitors have come to delight in the ability to easily access some of the state’s most beautiful locations with great trails, well-maintained facilities, and interpretive…

The U.S. achieved a milestone last year when renewable resources provided more electricity than coal for the first time. How did Oregon fit into the picture?

03/09/23
When Jim Kreider first heard about the proposed transmission line, he was angry. The Boardman-to-Hemingway line, known as B2H, would run 300 miles across five Eastern Oregon counties, including through the hills west of La…

Renewable fuel faces uncertain future in northern Oregon, Pacific Northwest

02/26/23
In a quiet northern pocket of rural Oregon, the soil is dark and damp. Mint and blueberries thrive here. Wetlands host unique plants and wildlife. There’s also a deepwater port along the Columbia River.

Developer eyes North Portland for major energy storage project

02/14/23
A developer is laying the groundwork for an Oregon battery energy storage project that could be more than three times the size of the largest existing system in the state.

Oregon churns out renewable energy, but needs batteries to store it

02/12/23
In Oregon, some utilities have begun ramping up renewable energy to meet the state's clean energy goals, but there’s a problem: The energy generated from these sources can only be used when the wind is…

Why Northwest officials are only now deciding how to regulate crypto mining

02/10/23
In a county of just over 100,000 residents, sitting directly below the Grand Coulee Dam, 13 crypto mining operations – think warehouses stacked with networked computers continuously working on complex math equations to earn bitcoin…

Oregon churns out renewable energy, but needs batteries to store it

02/10/23
Some Oregon utilities have begun ramping up renewable energy to meet the state’s clean energy goals, but there’s a problem: The power can only be used when the wind is blowing or the sun is…

Oregon city’s gas ban continues spread across the West

02/08/23
The gas prohibition in Eugene puts Oregon in line with its West Coast neighbors, where similar restrictions on fossil fuel heat are widespread. Oregon city’s gas ban continues spread across the West is an article…

NE Portland’s Cully neighborhood fights displacement, climate change with urban renewal. But will it work?

01/22/23
All around her, Chach Heart sees aging roofs and peeling siding. Nearby, decades-old water-damaged trailers line row after dilapidated row.

Oregon faces sustained and novel risks and opportunities as climate changes, new assessment shows

01/04/23
Oregon continues to face new and enduring hazards related to climate change, but opportunities for adaptation and mitigation are also expanding, the latest assessment released today by the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute indicates.

Innovative Renewable Energy Project in Oregon Combines Wind, Solar and Battery Storage

11/21/22
A first-of-its-kind project, the Wheatridge Renewable Energy Facility in Morrow County, Oregon is the first utility-scale power plant in North America that combines wind and solar energy and battery storage in one location. The project…

Tiny Oregon Town Hosts 1st Wind-Solar-Battery ‘Hybrid’ Plant

09/28/22
A renewable energy facility in Oregon that combines solar power, wind power and massive batteries to store the energy generated there has officially opened as the first utility-scale plant of its kind in North America.

These cattle ranchers are raising better beef, spending less — and reducing carbon emissions

03/21/22
Brown grew up in Bismarck, N.D., and went to college to be an agriculture professor. Then he married his high school sweetheart, whose family had a farm. The young couple moved home to help on…

Portland tree canopy has stagnated or shrunk, harming city’s climate change aspirations

03/17/22
Portland leaders received a grim snapshot Wednesday of the state of the city’s urban forest, suggesting that growth in its tree canopy has shrunk or plateaued for the first time in 50 years.

Agrivoltaic systems have the potential to meet energy demands of electric vehicles in rural Oregon, US

03/17/22
Electrification of the transportation industry is necessary; however, range anxiety has proven to be a major hindrance to individuals adopting electric vehicles (EVs). Agrivoltaic systems (AVS) can facilitate the transition to EVs by powering EV…

Federal spending bill expected to aid Oregon State wave energy, wildfire and mass timber projects

03/16/22
Federal spending legislation signed into law yesterday includes funding for several Oregon State University initiatives, including a wave energy project on the Oregon Coast, a study of the impacts of wildfires on drinking water and…

Portland Business Alliance blasts clean energy fund ‘mismanagement,’ urges city leaders freeze spending

03/14/22
Portland’s most influential business organization on Monday took at aim at the city’s clean energy program that is both awash in cash and under scrutiny as it begins to bankroll projects aimed to combat climate…

Portland Clean Energy Fund program is still missing key pieces, audit finds

03/10/22
Portland’s first-of-its-kind climate justice program needs help getting off the ground despite generating far more revenue than expected, according to a city audit released Thursday.

Environment bills address Oregon’s bottle bill, earthquake safety, more

03/09/22
Senate Bill 1520 also addresses low redemption rates by requiring large non-participating beverage distributors in certain parts of the state to either provide redemption services, join the Oregon Beverage Recycling Cooperative or pay a fee…

State Energy Department to offer $12 million in grants for community solar, wind projects

03/08/22
The agency announced they’ll release $12 million in grants for projects such as adding more electric vehicle charging stations in rural parts of the state and adding solar panels to public buildings. Money will also…

US Plans to Auction 3 GW Offshore Oregon, Pinpoints Three Areas

02/25/22
This is according to a presentation BOEM published ahead of the tenth meeting of the BOEM Oregon Intergovernmental Renewable Energy Task Force to be held today (25 February).

Pipeline expansion would increase the flow of natural gas through the Northwest

02/24/22
TC Energy wants to modify compressor stations along the Gas Transmission Northwest pipeline in Oregon, Washington and Idaho to get about 150,000 dekatherms more gas flowing through the region per day — enough to meet…

Portland community leaders bring the heat to building standards

02/22/22
On a cold December morning, Anjeanette Brown sat inside a Shari’s restaurant, nursing a cup of coffee and casually pushing sharp objects out of the reach of their 1-year old daughter. Brown, a Black environmental…

Woke Portland city bosses award $12m clean energy contract aimed at boosting racial equity to bankrupt fraudster accused of lying about her prior experience

12/14/21
According to an investigation by the Oregonian, Linda Woodley, 71, has served time in prison over the past 25 years for defrauding energy companies, and racked up millions of dollars in liens for unpaid federal…

Oregon has a new plan for cutting climate pollution

10/11/21
After years of trying and failing to launch a cap and trade program to reduce carbon emissions economy-wide, Oregon has a new plan to cut some of its biggest sources of climate pollution.

Northwest Power and Conservation Council Sets Aggressive Targets for Renewable Energy

10/02/21
The Northwest Power and Conservation Council has published its draft 2021 Northwest Power Plan, which will guide the development of the Bonneville Power Administration and the regional power grid through 2027.

Iron Battery Breakthrough Could Eat Lithium’s Lunch

09/30/21
The world’s electric grids are creaking under the pressure of volatile fossil-fuel prices and the imperative of weaning the world off polluting energy sources. A solution may be at hand, thanks to an innovative battery…

STracker Solar installs dual-axis trackers at Southern Oregon University for agrivoltaic research

09/30/21
STracker Solar of Ashland, Oregon, has installed three new proprietary STrackers in the north end of Southern Oregon Univerity’s Sustainability Farm adjacent to the ScienceWorks Museum parking lot.

Portland’s massive clean energy fund plans $100M spending spree to fight climate change, promote racial and social justice

09/29/21
Portland city officials are preparing to bankroll a new bonanza of clean energy projects and jobs geared toward the city’s historically marginalized communities.

Oregon readies plan aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, addressing climate change

09/20/21
After more than a year of work, Oregon has proposed rules for its Climate Protection Program, meant to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address the effects of climate change.

Turning Waste Into Megawatts

08/16/21
Clackamas Water Environment Services, Energy Trust of Oregon and Portland General Electric celebrate new co-generation system, renewable energy  

Oregon governor signs ambitious clean energy bill

07/28/21
Oregon’s clean energy bill, which sets one of the most ambitious timelines in the country for moving to 100% clean electricity sources, was signed by Gov. Kate Brown on Tuesday.

Oregon utilities face big challenges meeting 100% clean electricity by 2040 target

07/21/21
Oregon just passed an ideologically and technically ambitious clean energy bill that directs its two largest utilities to deliver 100% clean electricity to customers by 2040 and prohibits new or expanded natural gas-fired power plants…

The Bootleg Fire in Oregon is so large, it’s creating its own weather

By Joe Sutton, Michael Guy and Hollie Silverman 07/20/21
As hot, dry weather conditions continue to fuel wildfires across much of the United States, the Bootleg Fire in Oregon has become so intense that it's creating its own weather. The fire has scorched more than 606 square miles --…

Preparing for Climate Change in Oregon

08/30/20
This page provides an overview of the steps Oregon is taking to prepare for the impacts of climate change.

Corvallis Climate Action Plan

04/11/19
The Corvallis Climate Action Plan was adopted by City Council in December 2016 following a two-year research and development period by the Climate Action Task Force. The plan goals, greenhouse gas reduction targets, and high-priority…

Portland 2015 Climate Action Plan

04/11/19
In 1993, Portland was the first city in the United States to create a local action plan for cutting carbon. Since then, the City of Portland and Multnomah County have collaborated to produce updated climate…

4th Oregon Climate Assessment Report (2019)

04/10/19
The Oregon Climate Change Research Institute (OCCRI) periodically assesses the state of knowledge of climate science as it pertains to Oregon, fulfilling the legislative mandate that created OCCRI. This report was delivered on January 31,…

Higher Oregon renewable portfolio standard targets likely to boost wind power

04/22/16
Oregon recently enacted legislation that requires two large investor-owned utilities operating in the state to supply 50% of the state's electricity from renewable sources by 2040.

KEY RESOURCES

Oregon Solar Panels: Pricing and Incentives

02/02/22
Oregon was one of the earliest adopters of solar power in the country. And despite the state’s reputation for gloomy weather, it ranks among the top half of states for solar energy generation, and it’s…

Oregon State Profile and Energy Estimates

10/18/21
Oregon has many renewable energy resources. High annual rainfall in the western part of the state coupled with runoff from the snowpack in mountains across the state make it possible to generate substantial amounts of…

Energy State Bill Tracking Database

09/10/21
The searchable Energy Storage Legislation Database displays information in interactive maps and charts, tracking state activity from 2017 to the present.

The First National Flood Risk Assessment

10/06/20
The First Street Foundation Flood Model represents the culmination of decades of research and development made possible by building upon existing knowledge and frameworks regularly referenced in the identification of flood risk.

The State of Climate Adaptation in Public Health An Assessment of 16 U.S. States

10/06/20
EcoAdaptpartnered with the Natural Resources Defense Council to assess the state of climate adaptation planning and implementation for climate-related threats to public health in 16 U.S. states.

The Impacts of Climate Change and the Trump Administration’s Anti-Environmental Agenda in Oregon

09/19/20
Between 2017 and 2019, Oregon experienced two wildfires and one drought. The damages of each event led to losses of at least $1 billion.

Oregon Climate and Health Resilience Plan

09/16/20
The plan outlines a set of actions that the public health workforce specifically can take to adapt to climate change. The report is accompanied by a number of videos that demonstrate the current resilience strategies…

Oregon Drought

09/16/20
Oregon is projected to see an increase in severity of widespread summer drought of approximately 50 percent by 2050.

What Climate Change Means for Oregon

09/16/20
Oregon’s climate is changing. Over the past century, most of the state has warmed about two degrees (F). Snowpack is melting earlier in the year, and the flow of meltwater into streams during summer is…

State-by-State: Climate Change in Oregon

08/06/20
Oregon is vulnerable to increasing heat, reduced snowpack, ocean acidification and wildfires

Cascadia Climate Action

02/14/20
British Columbia has already advanced a carbon tax shift, and Oregon and Washington are actively developing policies to make polluters pay for their pollution. This series follows and analyzes carbon pricing developments across Cascadia.

Portland Clean Energy Fund

07/23/19
The Portland Clean Energy Fund will bring $54 to $71 million in new annual revenue for clean energy and clean energy jobs in Portland. Nonprofit organizations, alone or in partnership with for-profit companies, schools and/or…

Keep Oregon Cool: Oregon Global Warming Commission

06/11/19
The Oregon Global Warming Commission tracks trends in greenhouse gas emissions, recommends ways to coordinate state and local efforts to reduce emissions, and works to prepare communities for the effects of climate change. The Commission…

Oregon Climate Change Research Institute

06/07/19
The Oregon State Legislature established the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute (OCCRI) within the Department of Higher Education in 2007. OCCRI is a network of over 150 researchers at Oregon State University (OSU), the University of Oregon,…

MORE NEWS

Heat, Water, Fire: How Climate Change Is Transforming the Pacific Crest Trail

By Rowan Moore Gerety   08/31/22  
In the desert near Agua Dulce, north of Los Angeles, hikers along the Pacific Crest Trail who reached mile marker 502 encountered a cistern of water that smelled bad and tasted worse, with a dead…
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Oregon officials defy order to halt farmer water deliveries

08/24/22  
The Klamath Irrigation District in Southern Oregon plans to defy a U.S. government order issued last week for a halt to water deliveries to farmers in the drought-stricken basin. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation manages…
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Ranchers told to stop diverting water in drought-hit area

08/24/22  
California has warned a group of farmers and ranchers near the Oregon state line to stop diverting water from an area already wracked by extreme drought and a wildfire that killed tens of thousands of…
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Interstate 84 closed in eastern Oregon due to wildfire smoke

06/29/22  
The Oregon Department of Transportation said the interstate was closed westbound in Ontario and eastbound in Baker City because of smoke from a wildfire.
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Oregon seeks community voices for climate equity committee

By Monica Samayoa   06/23/22  
DEQ is looking for about a dozen members from around the state to provide feedback and hold the agency accountable for its goals under the newly implemented Climate Protection Program. The program is designed to…
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Oregon Adopts Strongest Worker Protections in U.S. Against Heat and Wildfire Smoke

05/12/22  
To protect against extreme heat, employers must as of June 15 afford workers paid heat breaks when temperatures surpass 80 degrees F and must provide access to shade and drinking water, among other measures. To…
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Oregon Adopts Nation’s Strongest Farmworker Protections for Heat and Wildfire Smoke

By Lynne Terry   05/12/22  
New rules going into effect in Oregon in June and July are expected to protect tens of thousands of workers from illness and death when temperatures soar past 80 or when the air becomes clogged…
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Report: Oregon has $5.3b invested in fossil fuel companies

By Andrew Selsky   04/21/22  
The Oregon State Treasury has at least $5.3 billion invested in fossil fuel companies, a coalition of environmental groups said in a report Wednesday that blamed the state for adding to global warming and urged…
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Oregon delegation seeks federal funding for Port

By David Rupkalvis   03/20/22  
Six of Oregon’s seven Congressional members are going to bat to bring in funding to help the Port of Coos Bay bring a container facility to Coos Bay.
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Race to the bottom: How big business took over Oregon’s first protected aquifer

By Emily Cureton Cook   03/20/22  
The warnings were hard to miss on a forsaken stretch of Highway 26 in Eastern Oregon. A sign reading “Travel at own risk” clung upside down to a weather-beaten post. A private driveway forewarned: “If…
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Avista sues over Oregon’s ‘Climate Protection Program’

By Newsroom Staff   03/18/22  
Late last year, Oregon’s Environmental Quality Commission adopted rules establishing the CPP to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to address the effects of climate change. The regulations would apply to large stationary sources of natural gas,…
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Climate change results in projected shifts in plant hardiness zones

By Kym Pokorny   03/18/22  
You visit the nursery, pick out a primo plant, come home, put it in the ground and wait for it to become a beautiful tree, shrub or perennial. Then spring arrives and it’s dead or…
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Portland planning bureau director departs with $195K severance amid climate change program problems

By Shane Dixon Kavanaugh   03/15/22  
The head of the Portland agency tasked with tackling climate change and managing a massive clean energy program that’s both awash in cash and under scrutiny has accepted a six-figure severance to depart the agency.
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How Oregon wine can survive climate change

By Pete Danko   03/14/22  
Warming has transformed the Willamette Valley since its modern founding in the 1960s from a marginal region for wine grapes to one where “bad” vintages — wildfire smoke excepted, perhaps — are a rarity.
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After two-year review, Oregon’s climate change strategy must be more aggressive, committee says

By Alex Baumhardt   03/10/22  
The Oregon Climate Action Plan Steering Committee is made up of environmental, labor, public health and youth and community groups such as Renew Oregon, the Oregon Public Health Association and the Eugene-Springfield branch of the…
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Recent projections for climate change push Medford’s climate adaptation plan forward

By Tyler Ridgle   03/08/22  
Medford has been working on its Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Plan since early 2022. One planning committee member is helping the city understand what next steps should be taken to adjust to the climate, based…
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Climate change becomes latest threat to embattled Oregon spotted frog

By Michael Kohn   03/08/22  
Dams in the Deschutes River, along with the canals that siphon water away from it, have sent Oregon spotted frog numbers in decline for decades. Now scientists worry that Oregon’s megadrought could be making things…
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Climate experts predict ‘tough times’ ahead as drought conditions continue

By Monica Samayoa   03/04/22  
Climate experts from Oregon, Washington and Idaho shared an update on Thursday that shows about 74% of the Pacific Northwest is seeing drought conditions with 18% of the region experiencing exceptional drought. They predict the…
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Climate change is already displacing people in Oregon. A UN report warns of more to come

By Courtney Sherwood and Rolando Hernandez   03/02/22  
Thousands of Oregonians have already been displaced by climate change, which is reshaping landscapes and livelihoods around the globe, according to an Oregon State University associate professor who joined almost 300 researchers to create an…
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Climate change impacting West Coast kelp forests, OSU researcher says

By Galen Ettlin   02/22/22  
An Oregon State University (OSU) researcher said important kelp forests off the West Coast are feeling the impact of climate change, which could affect products people use every day.
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Oregon Group Hires Climate Scientist to Walk the Talk on Coastal Tourism

By Lebawit Lily Girma   02/22/22  
As surprising as it might seem, a U.S. destination management organization stepping up to tackle climate action head on remains a novelty in the travel industry, despite America ranking among the world’s top three biggest…
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This Vast Wildfire Lab Is Helping Foresters Prepare for a Hotter Planet

By Henry Fountain   01/05/22  
When a monster of a wildfire whipped into the Sycan Marsh Preserve here in south-central Oregon in July, Katie Sauerbrey feared the worst.
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Inside Clean Energy: Here Are 5 States that Took Leaps on Clean Energy Policy in 2021

By Dan Gearino   12/23/21  
It’s understandable if people are feeling dour during this unseasonably warm December when, once again, the U.S. Congress has failed to pass major climate legislation.
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Jordan Cove developers abandon plans for pipeline, Coos Bay LNG terminal

By Carisa Cegavske   12/01/21  
The developers that had hoped to build the Pacific Connector Pipeline and Jordan Cove Energy Project have told the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission they do not intend to move forward with the project.
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There’s a New Front in the War on Christmas

By Brian Kahn   12/01/21  
Climate change is the latest combatant in the war on Christmas. This summer’s record-smashing heat wave in the Pacific Northwest was an all-out assault on Christmas trees, and the impacts could reverberate not just this…
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Climate change fuels a water rights conflict built on over a century of broken promises

By Nick Kirkpatrick and others   11/22/21  
The simple way to think about this crisis: There’s no longer enough water to go around to meet the needs of farmers and Native American populations as well as fish and birds.
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Climate change is making it harder to find fall foliage

By Associated Press   09/30/21  
Droughts that cause leaves to turn brown and wither before they can reach peak color. Heat waves prompting leaves to fall before autumn even arrives. Extreme weather events like hurricanes that strip trees of their…
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Trainor and Nunez: Build Back Better offers Oregonians hope

By Graham Trainor and Diana Nunez   09/29/21  
Graham Trainor is president of the Oregon AFL-CIO. Diana Nunez is executive director of the Oregon Environmental Council.
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More renewable energy, less energy efficiency in new Northwest power plan

By Courtney Flatt   09/28/21  
More renewable energy development and less room for energy conservation are two of the biggest changes in the draft of the new regional power plan.
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Oregon Has A New Plan To Protect Homes From Wildfire. Homebuilders Are Pushing Back

By Cassandra Profita   09/27/21  
The green metal roof on Mary Bradshaw's house gleams amid scorched earth and dead, blackened trees. All of the surrounding homes burned in last year's Beachie Creek Fire in Oregon's Santiam Canyon, but hers was…
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Poll: 66% of Oregonians predict unstoppable climate change

By Zane Sparling   09/26/21  
That’s the pessimistic point of view espoused by the two-thirds of Oregonians who believe there’s a slight chance, or no chance at all, that humans can solve climate change in time to stave off the…
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Portland youths take their climate-action message back on the streets after pausing for the pandemic

By Monica Samayoa   09/25/21  
Portland youth climate strikers were back in action Friday after the COVID-19 pandemic forced them to take an 18-month pause.
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Oregon senators demand climate action in federal budget plan

By Peter Wong   09/23/21  
Oregon's senators are among seven Western Democrats who say they are including steps to counter climate change in the federal budget resolution and other measures pending before Congress.
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Environmental Justice Advocates Lead Oregon To 100 Percent Clean Electricity Future

By Catie Gould   09/23/21  
On July 19th, Oregon Governor Kate Brown signed one of the most aggressive clean electricity policies in the country. HB 2021, “100% Clean Energy for All,” aims to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity serving…
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Oregon scientist is working to get more planet-warming carbon out of the atmosphere

By Jes Burns   09/22/21  
Over the next three years, Oregon State University researchers will be tackling one of the biggest technological challenges of our time — removing climate change-causing carbon from the atmosphere.
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Oregon tree experts expect delayed mortality due to drought

By Associated Press   09/18/21  
 The effects of the drought and heat on trees won’t be fully known until next spring, tree experts in Oregon say.
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Climate Change Brews Coffee Price Spike

By Sander Gusinow   09/17/21  
One of Oregon’s largest coffee companies saw a spectacular jump in stock prices this week after its initial public offering.
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Climate change and hot, dry summers mean big trouble for Oregon’s trees

By Lizzy Acker   09/17/21  
As Oregon heads from a summer that began with a record-shattering heatwave into autumn, on some branches, the scorched leaves of deciduous trees are turning brown instead of red before falling to the ground. And there are noticeable dead…
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Dead zone lingers in ocean off Oregon Coast longer than expected

By Keely Chalmars   09/10/21  
It was during a routine trip to round up underwater instruments that Oregon State University marine ecologist Francis Chan discovered something he didn't expect. "It was really surprising," he recalled. "Oxygen levels were still really…
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When Hard Jobs Turn Hazardous

By Sergio Olmos   09/05/21  
In early summer, a day laborer laying irrigation lines at a plant nursery just south of Portland, Ore., collapsed to the ground and died. His official cause of death was declared “heat related.”
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Pacific Northwest Bakes Under More Searing Heat

By Molly Taft   08/13/21  
The Pacific Northwest is enduring searing heat at the end of this week, a little over a month after multiple days of record-breaking temperatures killed hundreds of people in the region.
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First Thing: Oregon declares emergency as another ‘extreme heatwave’ looms

By Nicola Slawson   08/12/21  
Oregon has declared a state of emergency as the Pacific north-west prepares for triple-digit temperatures just weeks after a deadly heatwavestruck the region. People streamed into cooling centers and misting stations on Wednesday evening in…
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Oregon Climate Plan Is First in U.S. to Account for ‘Blue Carbon’ Benefits of Coastal Habitats

By Sylvia Troost and Others   08/05/21  
Oregon’s estuaries, where rivers meet the sea, are home to forested tidal wetlands, ecosystems that store more carbon by area than almost any other type of wetland in the world. And for the first time,…
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Study: Rising heat plus strenuous jobs could hurt worker health

By Tim Christie   07/19/21  
In Oregon, the triple-digit temperatures that scorched the region were responsible for 116 deaths, according to the Oregon Medical Examiner’s Office, and prompted Gov. Kate Brown to order Oregon Occupational Safety and Health to enact…
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As the Bootleg Fire burns, locals are faced with the realities of climate change — and remain skeptical

By Joshua Partlow   07/17/21  
Youth pastor Matt Wolff and his wife, Jennifer, followed God’s direction when they settled at the end of a rutted dirt track in the pine forests above this southern Oregon town. And they have prayed…
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Brutal heat wave persists in U.S. West as Oregon wildfire rages

By Sergio Olmos   07/13/21  
PORTLAND, Ore. July 12 (Reuters) - The U.S. West endured a fourth day of scorching heat on Monday as temperatures again threatened to shatter records, major wildfires burned nearly unchecked in drought-stricken Oregon and power…
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What Oregon’s Ambitious Climate Bill Means for Climate Change

By Olivia Rosane   07/13/21  
The day before a record-breaking heat dome descended on the Pacific Northwest, Oregon lawmakers finally passed major climate legislation.
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Baby birds flee the nest to escape record heat wave in Oregon

By Roselle Chen   07/12/21  
In a failed attempt to escape a record-breaking heat wave in late June in Pendleton, Oregon, more than 100 baby birds bailed from their nests. The downy babies, mostly Swainson and Cooper’s hawks, fell up…
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People struggled to tap resources during Northwest heat wave

By Sara Cline   07/12/21  
 People in Oregon struggled to get rides to cooling centers during the recent heat wave that is believed to have killed hundreds across the Pacific Northwest, officials said Monday, and staffing shortages prevented callers from…
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Heat wave joins list of Oregon’s deadliest natural disasters; the worst remains Heppner Flood of 1903

By Douglas Perry   07/02/21  
Oregon has a long history of terrible natural disasters, and almost all of them come in one of four bitter flavors: flood, fire, windstorm, and earthquake. But now, with the temperature getting as high as…
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