The time is past due for legislation in Oregon to address climate change. Lawmakers in Oregon have been working on a plan to for over 10 years. They now have ready a cap and invest plan, House Bill 2020, the Clean Energy Jobs Bill.
Cap and invest means there will be a limit placed on greenhouse gas pollution, which is causing climate change. Industries that emit above a certain level of pollution must buy permits in order to pollute. The limit will be reduced each year, forcing a reduction in pollution. The money paid for the permits will be invested in clean energy sources, energy efficiency jobs and methods to reduce pollution.
Proceeds from Clean Energy Jobs will be reinvested into our communities. It will help small businesses and homeowners make clean energy and energy efficiency upgrades, and help farmers and fishermen become more resilient to climate impacts. It will create local jobs that can’t be outsourced.
Cap and invest has been shown to work both in the U.S. and in Canada. Every state and province that has a clean air policy similar to the Clean Energy Jobs Bill has a growing economy, falling emissions and stable energy prices.
It is time for Oregon to join by passing HB 2020.