For Immediate Release:
January 9, 2018
As a statewide organization with 70 members across Oregon, the Oregon Business Alliance for Climate (The Alliance), has participated closely in the extensive efforts that have been underway since September in moving a carbon pricing bill forward for the pending Short Session. Toward that end, the Alliance Board has reviewed the revised language of the House and Senate versions of cap-and-invest legislation released today and generally supports the redrafting efforts and the outcome.
Tom Kelly, Alliance Board of Directors Chair, said that “While there are differences between the two bills, and there is more work to do, both effectively meet the core principles that the Alliance has stated carbon pricing legislation must include in order to garner our continued support; and, they reflect thoughtful responses to the important feedback provided during the Working Group sessions in the Fall. It is critical that we move on this legislation now.”
“As a business organization, we are focused on supporting innovation and economic health for Oregon,” Kelly continued. “We look forward to continuing to work with our elected leaders on a legislative outcome that includes mutually acceptable solutions that consider our utilities and Oregon’s largest employers, as well as providing a thorough fiscal and economic analysis. We will be at the table as the work continues to unfold.”
Alliance Board Secretary, Tom Koehler, Pacific Ethanol co-founder added, “There is a fundamental decision that needs to be made now and not danced around – do we believe the climate crisis is real and are we ready to do our part to make a difference? Oregon leaders have been working on this for over ten years. Both House and Senate bills provide an additional three-year public rulemaking process where all parties can come together for a truly Oregon solution. But we need to start that process now. There is no reason to wait. We applaud both Senate and House versions and look forward to helping pass this legislation this session. We believe action now will benefit Oregon’s economy and its citizens.”
The Alliance Statement of Support principles include supporting a statewide carbon pricing program that:
- Will reduce Oregon’s emissions through a well-designed market based carbon pricing program
- Aligns with state climate goals
- Maintains the viability and competitive health of existing Oregon businesses
- Anticipates pricing and regulation flexibility that will adjust over time as policy matures and climate goals are achieved
- Mitigates impacts on low-income communities, communities of color, and rural communities.
- Puts Oregon in a position to advance clean energy alternatives and contribute to worldwide efforts to decarbonize the global economy
- Encourages linkage to carbon markets in other jurisdictions
- Ensures a distribution of program proceeds that drives innovation and economic growth
Climate change presents a significant threat to our livelihoods, and carbon pricing is widely viewed as the most effective and efficient way to address it. The nature of the threat, together with federal inaction, demands that Oregon demonstrate timely policy leadership. The Alliance and its Board of Directors support moving forward with Cap and Trade legislation that meets these key principles in the 2018 Legislative Session. We firmly believe that now is the time to act and pass carbon pricing legislation.
Alliance Board members are as follows:
Owner and President, Neil Kelly Company
Co-Founder, Willamette Valley Vineyards
VP of Construction, Skanska
Public Affairs Manager, Uber
Co-Founder, Pacific Ethanol
Managing Director, Shiels Obletz Johnsen
Vice President, Strategic Communications, Moda, Inc.
Vice President, SolAire Homebuilders
Vice President, City of Roses Disposal & Recycling
Vice President, Vigor Industrial
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Our Mission is to provide a forum for Oregon industry leaders to collaborate on policy and business engagements aimed at promoting investment, job creation, competitiveness and economic growth toward Oregon’s low carbon economy.