We have a responsibility to ensure that low-income communities and communities of color are leading our efforts to address climate change and to create healthy communities.  As a graduate of the NAACP Climate Justice program I am equipped to address these pressing needs at Portland City Council. Though the City of Portland has a vision of moving us to a 100% renewable future by 2050 I am concerned that low income communities once again are not being included at the front end of this process.  We must:

  1. Reduce harmful emissions, particularly greenhouse gases
  2. Advance energy efficiency and clean energy projects that benefit all of Portland while improving the economic prospects of those left behind
  3. Strengthen community resilience and livability
  4. Be a national model of responding to climate change and economic inequality

Portland Just Energy Transition

In order to move towards our vision, we need to pass and implement the Portland Clean Energy Fund. I support and have helped champion the creation of the Portland Clean Energy Fund which will be on the November 2018 Portland city ballot.  This measure will create a Business License Surcharge of 1% on large retail operations with at least $1 billion dollars in national sales and $.5 million sales in the city of Portland. This will raise a pool of resources estimated at $30-35 million annually that will be focused on those left out of the economic prosperity in Portland, through investment in the people and communities most impacted by climate change and economic inequities.  This fund will be managed by a community oversight board of community members modeled after the Portland Children’s Levy.

The measure is a partnership between Coalition of Communities of Color, Portland Audubon, and Oregon Physicians for Social Responsibility, APANO, NAYA, Verde, 350PDX, Sierra Club and the NAACP Portland Branch. There are currently 140 community, faith and non-profit organizations already signed on in support of our efforts.  This measure is a model of centering communities disproportionately impacted by these issues and engaging them in problem solving that benefits the entire community.

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