PORTLAND — Students from across the state rallied at the Capitol on Earth Day to pledge their support for the Clean Energy Jobs bill (HB 2020), also known as cap-and-invest. It’s the most ambitious climate legislation in the country this year, making Oregon a national leader in the clean energy economy and climate protection.
But how exactly will the bill impact everyday Oregonians? Kris Grube knows.
“Small businesses like mine can serve more of our community with important energy efficiency upgrades. This legislation is all about creating jobs and helping people keep their cost of living down,” she says.
As a contractor focused on energy assessments and “energy efficiency remodels,” she helps make homes more efficient, more comfortable, and healthier.
“I am often working on homes where people can afford to do the work; they are not dependent on the reduction of their utility bills for their survival,” she says. “But the people who need our services the most need the Clean Energy Jobs bill to leverage their personal commitment to energy efficiency upgrades.”
Kris says it doesn’t take much to help families offset their cost of living through energy efficiency upgrades — usually some insulation, a ductless heating system, sealing up leaky houses or installing a more efficient hot water heater can make an enormous impact for the environment, and equal huge savings on energy costs.
“The most exciting part of this bill is that we will be able to serve people we haven’t been able to in the past.”
The Clean Energy Jobs bill will help employ a variety of skilled workers across the state
Kris says that in her industry, there are a lot of people who want to use their skills to make a difference. Instead of installing countertops and putting in new bathrooms, construction and contractor-type jobs can do the kind of carpentry that impacts our planet.
“I think there’s a misunderstanding of what a ‘clean energy job’ is. This bill will employ electricians, it will employ window installers, insulators, carpenters, heating contractors, construction workers…” she says.
How? Because it takes carbon to create energy. Kris’ work helps make homes use energy more efficiently. Less energy used is better for the environment.
Oregon has long been a national and world leader in demonstrating the Oregon Way: policies that preserve our natural environment while also supporting long-term economic competitiveness and business growth. With the world at a crossroads on climate policy, Governor Brown’s Vision is for Oregon to continue to pursue solutions that reduce emissions while creating good jobs and building a clean energy economy.
The Clean Energy Jobs bill will do just that.