Solar Oregon Tagline


March 2014  



This newsletter reaches over 10,000 solar energy enthusiasts!

Click here to inquire about sponsorship

Thanks to our new and renewing Professional Members and Solar Supporters!



Solar Oregon strives to help all Oregonians achieve a clean energy future by providing public education and community outreach on solar energy as a part of an overall energy conservation and reduction goal.


Volunteer for Solar Oregon!
   Volunteers at Solar SUNday
Interested in volunteering? Email  [email protected].


Stay Connected to Solar

Facebook has clamped down on organic news feeds from Solar Oregon and others, so our FB Fans aren't always seeing our timely posts unless we pay for "ads." However, you can go to our Facebook page and click on LIKE then choose "Get Notifications" to continue to receive our posts.
Please do so. Solar Oregon has a lot going on this year so it's a good idea to follow us on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. Stay in Touch!
Stay up to date on solar news and events by following us on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn!

Facebook Button  Twitter ButtonLinkedIn Button 

Save the Date for Solar Now! University
Solar Now! Funding and Training Opportunity for Oregon Communities
Meet the Team, Kenn Kochi
Renewable Energy in the Developing World
Solar Oregon Volunteer Orientation
Meet the Team, Alan Scott
Solar Drinks
Thanks to Newsletter Sponsor Umpqua Bank
Upcoming Solar Events in Oregon
Save the Date for
Solar Now! University 

Solar Oregon is excited to announce our fifth annual Solar Now! University Conference. This year, Solar Oregon will hold the conference in the City of Hillsboro, a city well-known as a clean energy advocate and home to the largest solar manufacturing facility on the Continental US. The two-day conference takes place June 13th-14th, and is supported by Oregon Department of Energy, Energy Trust of Oregon, The City of Hillsboro, The City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, Umpqua Bank and SolarWorld.


During the 2014 conference, attendees will receive expert-led guidance on how to develop and support local solar energy programs.  Through seminars, workshops and panel discussions, the conference will discuss financial, technological and political strategies to increase state-wide solar development. Solar Now! University brings together key stakeholders from Oregon's solar community and is a great opportunity to connect with industry, local government, nonprofit leaders, policy makers and community advocates.


This year's Solar Now! University will also include a behind-the-scenes tour of SolarWorld and pre-conference Meet and Greet, a choice of two local solar field trips, and a Friday night dinner. We look forward to seeing you there! Stay tuned for more details at

Solar Now! Funding and Training Opportunity for Oregon Communities

Solar Oregon invites Oregon communities to apply for the funding and training opportunity through Northwest Solar Communities.  Northwest Solar Communities intends to award training and seed funding to three Oregon communities in 2014 to support local efforts to increase rooftop solar installations.


Northwest Solar Communities is seeking to partner with local governments or community-based non-profits to increase the amount of rooftop solar in their community. Eligible projects include solar bulk purchase campaigns (Solarize campaigns), community solar projects, or other projects that will increase deployment of distributed solar electric systems. The funds cannot be used for actual solar electric system acquisition or installation.


Selected communities will receive funding and training at Solar Now! University. In addition, Northwest Solar Communities will work with selected communities to share best practices for streamlined solar permitting, interconnection and/or codes.


Meet the Team 
 Born in Switzerland, and growing up on the East Coast, Kenn came out to the Northwest for school. He immediately fell in love with the region, its culture of sustainability and its open-minded, nature-loving people. Holding a B.A. in Philosophy from Whitman College and interested in pursuing a career in conservation, Kenn is Solar Oregon's newest team member. He is excited to help eager volunteers get involved in all aspects of Solar Oregon's work.

Previously Kenn worked as an outdoor educator and climbing instructor for a local climbing gym and at his college's outdoor program. In addition to working for Solar Oregon, Kenn volunteers in habitat restoration, bird monitoring and newsletter writing for a stream restoration organization. While not working, Kenn enjoys cooking, rock climbing, rafting, backpacking and pretty much any outdoor activity.  Welcome, Kenn!
Renewable Energy in the Developing World 

About this time last year Claire Carlson, Solar Oregon's former Executive Director, and I met for the first time through a service learning trip. We both signed up for travel to rural Nicaragua to learn about renewable energy in the developing world. For me it was the allure of traveling to Latin America, living with the local people and having a hands-on experience with solar installation. I've worked in the marketing side of renewable energy but I wanted to see the technical side and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I won't get into the details of how Claire talked me into joining the Solar Oregon board, but I will mention how amazing this experience was.


The trip was hosted by Green Empowerment (GE), a Portland-based nonprofit working on sustainable development worldwide. They host similar trips annually with universities such as Virginia Tech and Portland State University. Last year's trip was the first of its kind with an assembly of industry professionals. "The trip provides renewable energy professionals an opportunity to see how a simple solar panel has a tangible and positive benefit for a rural community," said Aaron Green, Technical Program Manager at GE.

Solar Oregon Volunteer Orientation


Are you interested in getting more involved with renewable energy? Does the idea of solar arrays on every rooftop get you excited? Do you want to network with others who support solar power in our region?  Are you looking for an opportunity to volunteer this spring and summer?

If so, then Solar Oregon is the place for you!  


 Come join us for our Volunteer Orientation on April 1st!   


When: Tuesday, April 1st, 6:30-8:00 pm (doors open at 6:00pm)


Where: The Solar Oregon office, 1231 NW Hoyt, Suite 402, Portland, Oregon 97209


What: This event will include networking, orientation to our organization, volunteer training, opportunities to sign up as a volunteer, and snacks! We encourage our past volunteers to attend also to get a refresher on what is new and exciting in solar energy.


Questions? Email Kenn Kochi, [email protected]   


We have lots of volunteer opportunities coming up this spring and summer - including Earth Day and our Solar Now! University Conference - along with monthly outreach events, promotions and projects. Solar knowledge or expertise is not a requirement.


For those interested in working in the office with our staff, we are looking for volunteers to assist with event planning, membership, website and communications. If you prefer to work independently, we've got some research projects that need your help. People with IT, communications, grant writing, fundraising, or other skills that support Solar Oregon's education and outreach work, are encouraged to attend.  


Meet the Team

ALAN SCOTT, FAIA, Solar Oregon Board Member  


Alan Scott came to Solar Oregon as a globally recognized leader in green building and a pioneer in sustainable design. He is currently a Principal at The Cadmus Group working in the Built Environment Division. An architect by training, Alan holds a bachelor of architecture from the University of Oregon is also a LEED Accredited Professional in Building Design and Construction (BD+C) and Operations and Maintenance (O+M).

Alan has more than 25 years of professional experience and prior to working at Cadmus he founded Green Buildings Services, Inc., the Portland-based sustainable building consultancy which he grew from a staff of three to a staff of more than 40 professionals with offices in four states. His list of consulting firsts includes developing the first LEED-certified project in Oregon, the first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold for New Construction project in Houston, the first LEED-certified courthouse in Texas, and the first LEED-certified project in Peru.


In recognition of his contributions to the field, the U.S Green Building Council (USGBC) chose Alan as one of its inaugural LEED Fellows in 2011. He was also named a Fellow by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and he received the Northwest Energy Efficiency Alliance's BetterBricks Award for Professional Services in 2003, the inaugural year of the award.   

Solar Drinks!

Don't miss March Solar Drinks tomorrow night (3/26) at the Old Market Pub. We'll be discussing what Oregon can do to lower the soft costs of solar electric systems and make solar more affordable for you and me.  Appetizers provided.

Mark you calendars for April Solar Drinks on Tuesday, April 22nd in downtown Portland.  Join us at Tonkon Torp to learn about your solar rights in Oregon. Click here for more information and to RSVP 


Solar Drinks features a speaker on a solar energy topic each month, and provides an opportunity to connect with industry representatives, Solar Oregon staff, and other community members who support renewable energy.  

Thanks to Umpqua Bank, Solar Oregon Newsletter Sponsor!    
Umpqua Bank Lg Over the past four years, Solar Oregon has had the opportunity to work directly with Umpqua Bank in the residential solarize programs that we've been part of here in the Portland metro area and that relationship continues today.

Umpqua launched the GreenStreet Lending Program in order to invest in our local communities, while finding meaningful ways to foster sustainability. GreenStreet Lending began as collaboration between the Energy Trust of Oregon and Umpqua Bank in 2008 to encourage renewable energy and efficiency projects for home and small business owners to help cover associated upfront costs. 


GreenStreet Lending combines two of Umpqua's favorite things - local & sustainable - which are values we share and see as important to a healthy community. Umpqua Bank Vice-President, Blaine Bartholomew, is active in Oregon's solar community and participated in the Solarize Portland and Solar Beaverton projects. He enjoys explaining how homeowners can finance renewable energy, or energy efficiency projects, for their own residence and business.   


Some of the benefits of the GreenStreet Lending Program include:
*Provides financing options for energy-efficient (weatherization) and renewable (solar) projects
*No prepayment costs, loan origination costs, or fees
*Borrowers need to provide a bid from a licensed contractor
*All utility companies are eligible
*100% financing is available if 51% of the total project is used for energy efficiency or solar power on Home Equity products

Umpqua Bank has infused a billion dollars into the neighborhoods they serve with their Community Lending Campaign. They figure these loans can spark billions of dollars more in new local business and jobs that will have a lasting impact. We agree, and appreciate that a bank sees the potential to turn ideas and passion of local entrepreneurs, innovators and small businesses into prosperity. Umpqua Bank is saying ... hey, we're all in this together, folks ... and that resonates with us.  

Calendar Icon
     Upcoming Events
ASES logoSolar Now! logo EarthShare Oregon logo
Americorps logo