In 2016 Hood River County invited local partners and stakeholders to jointly develop the Hood River County Energy Plan. In doing so, the county joined a growing list of communities around the U.S. and the world that are addressing climate change and energy concerns with a long-term vision and plan.
A 12-month process involving more than two dozen volunteers and hundreds of hours resulted in the energy plan, which is a blueprint to help our community work toward three goals:
– Reduce fossil fuel use in Hood River County (30% by 2030, 80% by 2050)
– Improve resilience & energy independence (50% locally supplied by 2050)
– Increase investment in local power ($25 M revolving loan fund by 2025)
There are 5 local jurisdictions (Hood River County, the City of Hood River, the City of Cascade Locks, the Port of Hood River and the Port of Cascade Locks) that helped to fund the plan and will consider adopting it at their upcoming meetings. YOUR supportive testimony at each is needed to show support for the plan and urge adoption. (Check the meeting agenda to determine when, during meeting, testimony will be taken on the Energy Plan.)
The plan includes a summary inventory of the county’s energy usage, which costs about $80 million annually for the 24,000 residents. About $23 million of that is spent on electricity, for which the plan proposes strategies and objectives to increase energy efficiencies in buildings and transportation, as well as to increase the local generation of renewable energy. About $52 million, or about 2/3, of the total is spent on gasoline and diesel fuel for transportation, for which the plan proposes strategies and objectives to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) in the county. Because an EV is about 4 times as energy-efficient as a gas or diesel vehicle, the $52 million spent on fuel today will be replaced by around $15 million of electricity, with the option to keep more of that fuel spending local because we can generate the electricity locally.