Pages tagged "Stories"
I’m a 5th generation Oregonian. My family has lived here a long time. For decades and decades we’ve made our living thanks to the abundant natural resources in our state. With that long tradition comes a closeness to the land and an eye for how things have changed.
We can feel it in Douglas County. Our Rocking C Ranch is near the Umpqua River which which was as low as I’ve ever seen it this past summer. That’s pretty close to home! The climate is changing and it should be a wake up call for all of us that it’s time to work together.
Working in natural resources, ranching or agriculture, there is an appreciation for how the whole system depends on the different parts. Within our county, there’s the whole lifecycle of water -- from Diamond Lake flowing to the ocean in Reedsport and back again. When you can sit on the porch at a friend’s home and look at the Umpqua and think ‘that water will flow by our ranch soon’, it gives you perspective on the way we’re all tied together.Read more
From my vantage point, as a wildland firefighter and someone who has served in the same fire lookout for many years, I can see the seasons are shifting. I’ve fought fire in Colorado, Oregon, California, Nevada and Washington. You could say that when it comes to fire, I’ve seen quite a bit. I see the climate is changing.
For me, fighting fires is my happy place – when I'm so tired and sore I can barely think or move, when everything I own is caked with mud and dust, when I can't get the smoke scent out of my skin, and my feet are beat up. For some reason, that's just the way I'm made. But that doesn’t mean my family and friends don’t worry when I’m out fighting these fires, or that I don’t worry for myself as the blazes I face become bigger and bigger still.Read more
Can we save organic coffee production in face of disease?
Coffee in the Northwest -- part art, part science. We can’t get enough of the delicious jolt from coffee, espresso, mocha, latte, cappuccino and all the rest. Fine coffee has become a way of life around here, with a lot of attention paid to how it’s made, where it comes from and how it’s grown.
The coffee plant is delicate and heavily dependent on the right climate and conditions to grow successfully. The world’s coffee growing regions are undergoing a disturbing transformation because of climate change. Recent studies show that on average we could lose about 25% of the capacity the world currently has for turning out Oregon’s favorite beans.Read more
As a native of Oregon who grew up in Portland off of east 82nd avenue, my community was especially vulnerable to the effects of air and climate pollution. We lived closer to major roadways, industrial sites, and the airport -- exposing me and the other kids to pollution and bad air quality. As a result, people in my community had higher rates of asthma and other health issues.
At the time, I didn’t realize the community I grew up in was experiencing greater environmental impacts than other communities, until I went to college to study City Planning, Public Policy and Management. It was there that I first made the connection. I have since dedicated my professional life to moving Oregon towards shared and sustained prosperity through increasing civic engagement – especially among other young people.Read more
In the rugged, beautiful hills of Eastern Oregon, Cory Carman runs her family’s cattle ranch along with her husband. The ranch, near the town of Wallowa, has been a fixture for four generations in Cory’s family. Their roots run deep in the northwest. Beer drinkers might recognize the name of her great-great uncle, one Henry Weinhard.Read more
I’m a third generation Oregon farmer; my family came here in 1885 and started growing hops in 1904. Depending on the time of year, we employ anywhere from six to 60 people. The very nature of our business hinges upon sustainability; being stewards of the land is how our industry survives.
Climate change is affecting our industry. This season in particular, I’m very concerned that our snowpack is so low. As part of my job I attend wine grape symposiums every year, and for last several years climate change has been a pressing topic of discussion. Climate change will influence which types of crops thrive in Oregon, and which ones won’t. Farming jobs depend on a healthy climate. The future of our award-winning wine and beer industry depends on it, too.Read more
When it comes to home performance and efficiency, I think of it in terms of what people are wasting. Often, they don’t even know it. Sure, by improving efficiency in a home or a building, a person will end up saving money on electric and heating/cooling bills and making the air inside cleaner to breath. But it’s the money they’re spending right now -- that they don’t have to spend -- that brings it home for customers I work with.
Think of it this way: if you’re walking with grocery bags and they have holes in them, and you’re losing 40% of your food, would you accept that? Of course not. That’s how much heat most homes are losing, and yet people carry on like it’s normal.Read more
I’ve been a union member for over 25 years. I believe that continued investment in the renewable energy economy would make Oregon a national leader, adding new jobs that can’t be outsourced. Good, family-supporting jobs with benefits that would create prosperity now and for future generations.
As the Secretary-Treasurer for the Oregon AFL-CIO, I oversee our workforce training and green jobs/climate change issues, so I am deeply involved in the intersection between labor and clean energy jobs. We want to see the clean energy sector grow for the benefit of our members, and our state as whole.
Energy-efficient homes are good for our planet and the people who live inside them. The improvements add value, durability and save homeowners money by reducing their energy bills. A high-performing home can clean the air to keep the people inside healthy. I work hard so that Oregonians can enjoy better homes.
Members of the Home Performance Guild are successful because they examine the home as a system with many interacting parts. When improved, the parts make a much better whole. Oregon is a home to all of us. Its interacting parts: workers, businesses, homeowners, communities and the environment can be a better whole. Oregon can be stronger, healthier and more valuable with a commitment to a clean energy economy.Read more
What I do in my work, with my company and for my customers all boils down to one thing-- quality of life. Oregon is a good market for home performance improvement because people here, at their core, understand the benefits of efficiency. It’s a mindset in Oregon to use our resources wisely, to get the most out of what we have.
Only about one in 10 Oregon homes are built or fixed up to perform at their best. There is a lot of room to grow for my business and others like it. A lot of work to be done. Those people who are already enjoying healthier indoor air, lower energy bills and a more comfortable home are who I call “early adopters.” They’ve opted to have the improvements made.Read more