Oregon throws down in the race - or at least the rhetoric - to become the national leader in renewable energy development.
Governor Ted Kulongoski (D), recently re-elected, has developed a four point renewable energy plan. 1) An Oregon renewable energy standard that would require utilities to get 25% of their electricity from renewable sources by 2025. 2) Fuel blending standards for biodiesel and ethanol - and the raw materials have to be grown or produced in the Northwest. 3) Increase the energy tax credit for businesses that install renewable energy systems and increase residential credits. 4) Maximize energy efficiency.
The renewable electricity standard is expected to be the hardest part to push through the legislature. Although everyone loves renewable energy, conservatives there are hesitant to use mandates.