Making it rain millions! On Monday March 9, 2020, Kate Brown’s administration was provided $5 million towards implementing a program to help reduce emissions in the state of Oregon.
The $5 million will supposedly be going towards setting up a program that is to be in place by 2022 as well as paying for the hiring of 10 new employees. So how will this cut greenhouse gas emissions? A few ideas have been tossed about by legislation, including one that would require permits for emissions associated with large industrial operations and imported fuels (this would include transportation fuels and natural gas). The thought is that over time the permitted emissions amount would decrease. Another notation is that a small range of emissions would be regulated versus cap and trade. Needless to say, not everyone is on board with these ideas.
The greenhouse emissions funding wasn’t the only expenditure approved by legislation at Monday’s emergency board meeting. $11 million was approved to go to Eastern Oregon for flood relief, $5 million to respond to the Coronavirus, and $2.7 to Oregon’s military for emergency preparedness. For anyone who loves math, that is $23.7 million dollars approved for dispersal. Funnily enough, there were no arguments by either party regarding this spending, however there was hesitation regarding funding for the Department of Environmental Quality to put in place new emissions regulations (anyone else immediately think of the lines at DEQ?). Despite some opposition, that funding did pass with both representatives in the house and senate.
How do you think this influx of money will help Oregon be more mindful of greenhouse emissions? What regulations would you like to see?