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June 2014


This newsletter reaches over 10,000 solar energy enthusiasts!


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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


Support solar energy education and outreach in Oregon, including this newsletter!  

 Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) is seeking Solar Proposals 

The City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability (BPS) is seeking proposals from individuals, firms, teams or consultants with demonstrated experience in solar installation. The City of Portland released a RFP for solar design and installation services. BPS is partnering with two site hosts who will be the owners of the PV systems: Portland Public Schools (PPS) and the Hacienda Community Development Corporation (HCDC).  Bids are due June 23rd by 4:00pm. Find more information here.

The Solar Oregon Annual Winery Tour


Last month, we hosted the Solar Winery tour! Over 50 individuals interested in solar and wine boarded one of two Old School PDX party buses complete with Karaoke and backlit dance floor on Saturday morning. Here are a few highlights of our trip!

After picking up people in Portland and Tualatin, each bus drove to a different winery to taste wine and learn about its solar systems.  One bus started the day at Elk Cove Vineyards which is one of the first 10 wineries in Oregon whereas the PV system supplies 30-40% of the winery's energy usage, producing approximately 41,500 kWh of electricity per year. Part of this energy is used by visitors charging their electric cars in the electric car charging station provided.    

The production of renewable energy at Elk Cove Vineyards will reduce the winery's carbon impact by an average of nearly 35 tons each year, and by 776 tons over the 25 year life of the photovoltaic system. Then we drove over to Gran Moraine Winery with a 51.3 kW ground mount array system featuring Evergreen 190 watt modules, producing 61,000 kWh per year. The array was set at 20 degrees for both aesthetics and the most economical use of the land. After the tour and tasting, the second bus joined the first for lunch provided by Frito Lay. Kramer Vineyards was the third stop with a 5 kW solar system which produces 3,850 kWh of electricity per year.



The panels are installed over the production facility which is a pole barn with a south facing sloped roof. They will reduce the winery's carbon impact by an average of 3.25 tons each year, and by 72 tons over the 25 year life of the photovoltaic system. An added lagniappe of the trip was tasting chocolate from Kallari as well as auctioning off wine to raise money for Solar Oregon! It was a great day for Solar! 



Thank you to our sponsors: Gran Moraine Winery, Elk Cove Vineyards, Kramer Vineyards, Richard Brown Architect, O'Brien Constructors, Frito Lay, Cadmus, R&H Construction, Merryman Barnes Architects, Rex Hill, red hills market, Kallari, Walsh Construction Co., Ernest R. Munch Architect, Precision Images, WillaKenzie Estate and Old School PDX for making the day a success.

Volunteer for Solar Oregon!

Contact Volunteer Coordinator Kenn Koichi to find out about upcoming opportunities at  
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Solar Oregon welcomes new Program Manager
Solar Now! University Conference -This Week
Meet the Team
Solar Oregon Participates in Legislative Policy Development
Meet Solar Oregon's new Volunteer!
$10K Mini-grant winners
Upcoming Events

Solar Oregon welcomes new Program Manager, Joshua Baker    

Last month we added a new staff member to manage the Northwest Solar Communities (NWSC) program for Solar Oregon. His name is Josh Baker and he'll be working on reducing and removing 'soft cost' barriers to getting solar installed in the region. Josh will serve on the NWSC Steering and Permitting Committees and will oversee projects associated with the solarize communities mini-grants as outlined in this newsletter. Additionally, Josh will work with Energy Trust of Oregon on our solar basics workshop offerings and other outreach events and commitments as required.  


Solar Now! University conference  

begins this week 

June 12-14  



Solar Now! University (SNU) conference is happening in a few short days and we want to inform you of what to expect of this once-a-year special event. First and foremost, the program came together much better than any of us could've ever imagined. The line-up and quality of the program offering, as well as the associated events like the dinner, awards lunch and field trips, is way beyond anything Solar Oregon has ever done in a single event.


SNU 2014 will be a big step up from previous years, not only in scope and attendance, but also in importance as we've increased our reach and captured national attention. Solar power experts from as far away as Washington DC, Colorado and Seattle will be attending and presenting. Representatives from U.S. Department of Energy and the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) will speak and lead some workshop sessions. They will provide a look at the solar energy landscape at the national level. Community solar experts like Tom Hunt of Clean Energy Collective and Linda Irvine of Northwest SEED will be showing us how to get solar done in our communities.


If you haven't done so already, sign-up today as time is running out ...Click here for Registration. Also check out our exciting and knowledge packed Agenda here.    


Meet the Team



Solar Oregon Board Member


Zach Henkin is a Program Manager for Drive Oregon, a non-profit organization representative of the growing electric vehicle industry in Oregon, where he specializes in workplace charging and electric vehicle deployment. Coming from a business development and marketing background, Zach has played a key role in several community led Solarize projects in Multnomah, and Clackamas County and has been passionate about contributing to the promotion of clean energy wherever possible.


>> Click here to read more

Solar Oregon Participates in PUC/ Legislative Policy Development


Solar Oregon has been actively working with a collaboration of environmental and energy organizations including Sierra Club, Renewable Northwest Project, OREP, Oregon Solar Energy Industries Association, City of Portland and others to tackle energy policy initiatives.


Recently the collaborative, called Solar Works for Oregon (SWO), provided a response to the Oregon Public Utilities Commission (OPUC) staff's Draft Report on the Effectiveness of Solar Programs in Oregon. The SWO response addressed mostly the need for the Final report to include updated solar cost and cost-effectiveness information, and to include recommendations for cost-effective programs that the utilities could implement. This OPUC Report is important in that it will be used by legislators to guide future legislation on solar programs implemented by utilities.

Meet Solar Oregon's new Volunteer! 

Bryce Magorian has been writing stories almost since he could hold the pencils, but after taking one too many ethics courses while earning his BA in Creative Writing at Pacific University he decided to put his writing talents to use telling the stories of nonprofits. Since graduating he has written grants, newsletters, etc. and performed other communications and outreach tasks for organizations involved in everything from workers' rights to transportation. Bryce began volunteering for Solar Oregon in 2014. He currently helps with writing their email outreach materials.


When not volunteering his time Bryce enjoys playing a variety of board games, going cycling, and debating ethics and philosophy with his close friends.




Five Oregon programs selected to receive $10K mini-grants

Solar Oregon is part of the Northwest Solar Communities (NWSC) program which offered $10,000 mini-grants to non-profits and local governments in Washington and Oregon to increase the deployment of rooftop solar. Eligible projects include solarize bulk purchase campaigns or other innovative solar market expansion projects focused on increasing grid-tied solar electric systems within the applicant's community, and may include residential, small commercial, agricultural or community scale systems. Projects must be ready to launch in 2014 and be completed by the end of March 2015. However, these mini-grants cannot be used for actual solar system acquisition or installation.


Last month, Solar Oregon staff and board reviewed submitted applications for these NWSC mini-grants. Applicants included local governments and community-based non-profit organizations in the state of Oregon. In our review, preference was given to projects that brought a solar campaign to a new geographic area or one that initiated a new model for increasing distributed solar electric systems.


>> Click here to read more  


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