February 2015 Newsletter
Thank you to our newsletter sponsor

In This Issue:
The Solar Sprint Campaign: 10,000 More Installations
Oregon Legislative Session Update: HB 2447
Meet New Solar Oregon Board Member
Solar Drinks: Join us at Neil Kelly on March 3rd
GO! Solar Video
Solar Shout Outs!
Upcoming Events
Solar Ready Toolkit
Join Solar Oregon
The Solar Sprint Campaign:
10,000 More Installations in Two Years

"Make no little plans; they have no magic to stir men's blood and probably themselves will not be realized. Make big plans; aim high in hope and work."
- Daniel Hudson Burnham (1846-1912)

Make no little plans.

That's what the board of Solar Oregon chose to do in adopting a goal of getting 10,000 more Northwest households to install solar by the end of 2016. Joined by our partners in Washington State, we've got a united effort to use the expiring Federal tax credit as an opportunity.

At the end of 2016, the Federal tax credit - which covers 30% of the cost of a solar installation - is due to expire, significantly impacting the ability of solar to serve as a great investment. There's never a better time to go solar than right now.

Rather than mourning this loss, we're taking it as an opportunity to get 10,000 more households to install solar. Over the past fifty years, we've seen about 10,000 installations in each Oregon and Washington. Over the next two, we aim to see another 10,000 in the states combined.

Getting there will mean a lot of hard work. We'll continue with our proven core work of tabling and offering Basics of Solar Workshops. As funding allows, we aim to organize neighborhood campaigns, possibly including Solarize, to get thousands of people in Portland and Washington County to solar. Those areas are particularly strong for us to target, given the underlying demographics and tools like Mapdwell, which includes LIDAR data to envision solar on their own homes via satellite. We'll work to get news stories and broadcast the urgency of the expiring tax credit. And we'll boost our Solar Ambassadors program, getting scores more members engaged in sharing their stories about the benefits of solar.

But we won't get there without your help. There are three big things you can do:
 (1) Donate to the effort. Become a member, or if you're a Solar Oregon member, give a special gift(2) Sign up to volunteer and help us with our outreach efforts; (3) Sign up as a Solar Ambassador. There's nothing more compelling than hearing the real stories of homeowners who've decided to go solar, and we need you to share yours.

Together, we can build a clean energy future.
Oregon Legislative Session Update: HB 2447

Last week Solar Oregon, together with other solar advocates, testified in support Oregon House Bill 2447 in front of the Oregon House Energy and Environment Committee. HB 2447 would extend the Residential Energy Tax Credit, which is due to expire in 2018, to the year 2022. 

The Residential Energy Tax Credit is a key part of Oregon's commitment to a clean energy future and Solar Oregon strongly supports the bill, which is sponsored by the Oregon Department of Energy.

Please contact your legislators today (state representative and senator) and ask them to support HB 2447. Click here to learn more about HB 2447 and contacting your elected officials.
Meet New Solar Oregon Board Member

Kevin DuellKevin Duell is a native Oregonian, long-time Portlander, amateur ballroom dancer, recreational tree climber, singer/songwriter, world traveler, and can be a real goof-ball.  Since childhood he has been obsessed with energy efficiency, recycling and renewable energy. He really enjoys his new job selling construction projects - upgrading buildings for sustainability and energy efficiency, a nice transition from many years of design engineering.

Those who have worked with Kevin say it is always a pleasure to work with him. His attention to detail and ability to think outside the box are highly valued traits that help make every project run smoothly. His ability to communicate clearly and easily with others is an asset that enhances every project he touches.

Welcome to the team, Kevin!
Join us at Neil Kelly on March 3rd!

Solar Drinks Logo
Solar Drinks is an opportunity for folks in the greater Portland area to meet other community members who support renewable energy. Come join us for a relaxed social and networking event where you can speak with Solar Oregon staff, solar industry members, and your neighbors about any topic under the sun!

Our March event will be held March 3rd at Neil Kelly 
Company in North Portland. Neil Kelly Company, the largest residential design- build remodeling firm in the Northwest, helps homeowners care for all aspects of their homes. Services include custom homes, award-winning design-build remodeling, energy upgrades and home repairs big and small.

Our featured guest speaker is Derek Smith, the Chief Executive Officer of Clean Energy Works. Derek has been in a leadership role in triple bottom line ventures for more than a decade, with experience in the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

GO! Solar

Gorge Owned, recipients of a grant from Northwest Solar Communities to support a local solarize campaign, made a beautiful video featuring a Gorge family that installed solar. Check it out and share! 
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GO! Solar

If you live in the Gorge, click here to learn more about registering for GO! Solar and installing solar at a discounted rate!
Solar Shout Outs!
Touring The Joinery's shop!

Thank you to The Joinery for hosting our last Solar DrinksWe had great time touring their shop and learning about their business. Also, thank you to Stephanie Ryan for presenting on B Corps!

Over three hundred panels recently went up on Kerr Contractor's warehouse in Woodburn. Why'd the owner decided to invest in solar: "This has a short payback and we'll be benefiting for the next 20 to 30 years."

Did you watch the Solar Super Bowl? Stadiums, arenas, and raceways across the country are investing in solar. 

Some substantial solar projects are coming across Oregon, from the Rogue Valley airport to affordable housing in Prineville to the Oregon Convention Center.

Our friends at ASES, the American Solar Energy Society, are currently accepting abstracts for their SOLAR 2015 conference at Penn State. 
Upcoming Solar Oregon Events

Basics of Residential Solar Workshops
These free workshops cover the basics of why solar is a smart choice for Oregon homeowners, how well solar works in Oregon's climate, identify available solar technologies, how financial incentives may cover 70-80% of the cost, and discuss how to go about choosing a contractor. 
Solar Ready Toolkit

In case you missed it, Northwest Solar Communities recently released their Solar Ready Toolkit, a set of templates and information to support jurisdictions, utilities, and installers in lowering solar soft costs. Toolkit elements include:
  • Permitting: Tools for Building Departments, Code Officials, Inspectors
  • Interconnection: Tools for Utility Engineers, Regulators
  • Financing: Tools for Solar Installers, Consumers
  • Planning & Zoning: Tools for Planners
Additional tools and templates will be added in 2015. You can access the current Solar Ready Toolkit HERE.
Join Solar Oregon Today! 

Solar Oregon works hard to get solar built in Oregon. But we can't do our work without the support of people like you! For 35 years, we've been making solar happen with workshops, tours, technical support, trainings, education, outreach, research, and advocacy. But we've still got a long way yet to go until Oregon's clean energy future is secure.

We'd love to have you as a member -- please consider joining today!

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EarthShare Oregon logo