Up for a vote THIS WEEK: Oregon’s clean energy future

In Climate Change, Legislative Session by OLCVstaff

For me, the climate crisis isn’t just a scary news headline; it’s part of my daily reality. You can do something right now to help.

I just finished my senior year of high school in Portland. I have lived next to an industrial district and for many years have inhaled bad air into my lungs while running, walking, playing sports with friends, and other everyday activities. I have adapted to these conditions, but future kids shouldn’t have to. That’s why I’m reaching out to you, because there is something we can do today to fight for cleaner air and healthier communities. Lawmakers can pass HB 2021 B, 100% Clean Energy for All, and HB 2842 A, the Healthy Homes Act. These bills lay the foundation for Oregon’s just transition to a clean energy future, and both are being voted on this week!

100% Clean Energy for All (HB 2021 B) sets clear targets for cleaning up Oregon’s electricity–100% emissions-free electricity by 2040 with interim targets of 90% clean energy by 2035 and 80% by 2030. It would be one of the strongest 100% clean electricity commitments in the nation because it ensures Tribal consultation, prioritizes benefits for rural, coastal, low-income, and BIPOC communities, and requires strong labor standards.

The Healthy Homes Act (HB 2842 A) will create more home upgrades and weatherization to help improve the health and safety of families across Oregon, making grants to pay for such upgrades available to low-income homeowners and renters alike. Both of these bills are part of the Oregon Clean Energy Opportunity campaign, led by Environmental Justice groups like the Oregon Just Transition Alliance and Verde.

Contact your legislator today to urge them to vote YES on HB 2021 B and HB 2842 A.

As a young woman of color, I am fighting for these bills because I know we can no longer put off strong action to address climate change. In urging our lawmakers to support these bills, we’ll ensure that communities like mine have cleaner air and access to good-paying, clean energy jobs. And we’ll help ensure people in my generation have a stable climate in their future.

It’s daunting to think about how the responsibility for tackling climate change has and will fall on my generation’s shoulders. But if we work together to advocate for policies like the 100% Clean Energy for All Act and the Healthy Homes Act, we can set ourselves up for a brighter future than the one my fellow young Oregonians and I are facing right now. Can I count on you to take action today?

Thank you for your support!

Sofia Jayaswal
Lincoln High School Class of 2021