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"Kitzhaber hopes new plan will reactivate green energy in Oregon"

"Kitzhaber hopes new plan will reactivate green energy in Oregon"

The plan features a laundry list of initiatives to take renewables, efficiency and green transportation from the marginal to the mainstream.

Associated Press

>>> click here to read the original article

PORTLAND (AP) — Gov. John Kitzhaber has a new 10-year plan he hopes will be able to reactivate green energy in Oregon.

Despite the state’s embrace of wind and solar companies, they’re not making much of a contribution to the state’s energy needs.

The Columbia Plateau is now draped in wind turbines, but they supply only 3 percent of Oregon’s electricity. Solar and geothermal make a small contribution. Existing hydro-electricity is a big contributor, but fossil fuel plants still contribute half the state’s electricity.

The governor hopes his new plan will change those numbers, The Oregonian (http://is.gd/PD0W92 ) reports in Sunday’s newspaper.

The plan features a laundry list of initiatives to take renewables, efficiency and green transportation from the marginal to the mainstream.

Despite the economy, Kitzhaber’s advisers say now is a good time for an energy initiative. They promise many initiatives will be low- or no-cost and will fit with policies in neighboring states and regional initiatives.

Michael Jung, who worked as an energy adviser to former Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland, is now leading Kitzhaber’s effort.

Although the planning was completed in secrecy, The Oregonian has seen some early drafts from the design teams.

Ideas floated in the draft plan included a carbon tax, more energy from natural gas, smart grid improvements, incentives for renewable energy, a focus on conservation, streamline permitting of energy projects, and improvements to green transportation including the infrastructure for bicyclists.

 
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