A report issued by the Environment Oregon Research and Policy Center shows that despite rapid growth of renewable energy facilities in Oregon, the state still lags behind the rest of the country in solar and wind energy.
Oregon has had a lot of growth in clean energy generation – increasing 41-fold in the last decade. However nationally, the increase has been two times more. And because the Oregon legislature decided not to extend The Residential Energy Tax Credit next year, which incentivizes homeowners to install solar panels, that gap could increase. Charlie Fisher with Environment Oregon says already these impressive seeming growth rates aren’t enough to keep up with long-term environmental goals.
"If we continue at this pace, by 2050 we'll only get about 53 percent of our energy nationwide from renewable sources," says Fisher. "And we know that we need to get to 100 percent if we're actually going to prevent the worst consequences of climate change."
While Oregon is ranked in the bottom half of the nation for wind and solar energy, the state is among the top ten for electric vehicle growth. Fisher says this should be a source of confidence that Oregon is capable of taking renewable energy to the next level.