Hot off the press: the 2021 Environmental Scorecard for the Oregon Legislature is now available! You can read the online version here at scorecard.olcv.org.
Oregon has been through a lot in the past year. 2021 began with a freak ice storm that turned to unusually warm temperatures, statewide wildfires, and an extreme heatwave that left hundreds dead throughout the Pacific Northwest, all while in the midst of a pandemic.
During this year of catastrophes, the Oregon Legislature finally got serious about climate action. As the local effects of climate change became more apparent than ever, our state senators and representatives listened to environmental justice and climate activists like you and passed the Oregon Clean Energy Opportunity–100% Clean Energy for All (HB 2021), Healthy Homes (HB 2842), and the Energy Affordability Act (HB 2475)–as well as an impressive budget for natural resource agencies, wildfire legislation (SB 762), and more. Check out some of the major environmental bills that were voted on this year in the Scorecard!
The Scorecard also shows how your state senator and state representative voted on pro-environment bills, so you can hold them accountable as we head toward the next election: using our online form, send an email to your lawmakers either thanking them for voting for the bills you care about, or asking them to do better next year.
An impressive 24 state representatives and 11 state senators received 100% scores this year, and eight legislators were honored with awards. Representative Pam Marsh was recognized as 2021’s Environmental Champion of the Year for playing a crucial role in getting 100% Clean (HB 2021) through the House Energy and Environment Committee. In addition, freshman Representative Khanh Pham was recognized as Most Valuable Player for her leadership on several of our priorities, especially 100% Clean and the Oregon Forest Resources Institute Reform bill (HB 2357).
The OFRI bill was one of the disappointments of the session–the bill, which would have reformed the Oregon Forest Resources Institute (OFRI), quasi public agency that uses taxpayer money to fund pro-timber industry propaganda, died in the Senate. For now, OFRI has been left as unfinished business. You can read about all the good–and bad–bills that died at scorecard.olcv.org!
So, as we look back at the 2021 legislative session, we want to say a big thank you to YOU and your activism! You sent emails to your lawmakers, signed petitions, posted on social media, attended (virtual) hearings, and showed up for our first-ever virtual Lobby Day. Now, take a look at the Scorecard and see how your hard work has paid off. Then, join us in holding our lawmakers accountable as we head into the 2022 short session and the 2022 election! Email your legislators using our online tool and either thank them for standing up for the environment in 2021, or ask them to do better in 2022. Big things are ahead, so stay tuned.
Coalition Director, OLCV
P.S. You may recognize the photo on the cover of the Scorecard–that’s the winner of our 2021 Environmental Photo Contest, taken by firefighter Anthony Wellines. There are also photos from many of our finalists in the physical copy of the Scorecard, which you can view online here!