Dear Gov. Brown, Environmental Quality Commissioners, Director Richard Whitman, and staff,
We are writing in appreciation for the hard work and dedication you put forward to make the Climate Protection Program a reality.
The climate crisis is here, now. An extreme heat wave caused by climate change killed more than 100 Oregonians in the summer of 2021. Oregon has not recovered from the climate-fueled wildfires of the last few years, including the loss of 4,200 homes and buildings, and with widespread drought gripping the state it’s clear the climate crisis is harming our way of life. With major greenhouse gas pollution reductions required in the Climate Protection Program, Oregon is finally holding some of its largest polluters accountable for their share of climate pollution.
Oregon is ready to transition off dirty power like coal, oil, and gas to clean, affordable, reliable energy sources, like wind and solar, and electric cars and trucks. We will create good paying jobs, protect our health and climate, and make Oregon a leader in renewable energy innovation.
The Climate Protection Program is a milestone. It is a signal that Oregon’s involvement with dangerous fossil fuels is closer to the end than the beginning. Its adoption places Oregon among the leading states for real accountability in lowering climate pollution and shifting to a clean energy economy.
We look forward to continuing to work with you in the year to come as this program is fine-tuned and also on new policies and investments to improve the lives of Oregonians and do our part to combat climate change. While the Climate Protection Program sets a destination and a schedule for this trip to our clean energy future, we have a lot of work to do to make sure the tracks are laid, the train cars are in place, and there is a seat for every Oregonian.