Energy Trust of Oregon releases 2020 annual report
Statewide, Energy Trust’s customers saved $432 million on their utility bills in 2020
PORTLAND, Ore. — May 21, 2021 — With the release of its 2020 annual report, Energy Trust of Oregon is sharing how it helped residents, businesses and communities save on energy costs despite the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full annual report online at www.energytrust.org/annualreport.
Given all the obstacles associated with the pandemic, energy efficiency and renewable energy may not have seemed like obvious priorities. But in 2020, Energy Trust’s cash incentives for energy-efficient upgrades and clean-energy services provided some much-needed bill savings for customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural, Cascade Natural Gas and Avista. Thanks to upgrades completed in 2020, Oregon and Southwest Washington customers saved a total of $432 million on their utility bills while also protecting our environment by avoiding 270,000 tons of carbon dioxide.
To reach those hit hardest by the pandemic, including customers of color, customers with low incomes and rural communities, Energy Trust cultivated relationships with 52 community-based organizations across the state to deliver offers and find ways that energy efficiency and renewable energy can support community objectives. One example of success is partnering with 46 food banks, community action agencies and nonprofits to give away free 55,000 LEDs to low-income families.
“Working with customers and communities to recover from the pandemic and last year’s devastating wildfires requires us to understand and support customer needs and local efforts to build community health and well-being,” said Michael Colgrove, executive director at Energy Trust. “To do that, we are expanding our work with community partners to better understand when customer and community objectives align with energy efficiency and renewable energy. We look forward to the creativity and innovation that comes from collaborating in new ways to help customers emerge more resilient than before.”
Part of that work is finding new, timely opportunities for reducing energy use and building resiliency in our communities. That’s what Energy Trust did in 2020 by helping schools and colleges take advantage of empty classrooms to make clean energy upgrades without disruptions to students or staff. At Myrtle Crest School in Coos County, the Myrtle Point School District updated the building’s boiler and mechanical and electrical systems, saving the school $10,000 per year in energy costs. Myrtle Point also replaced more than 16,000 lightbulbs with LED lighting, which are estimated to save the district another $6,000 a year.
“Any dollar I save on utilities is a dollar I can put in the classroom,” said Myrtle Point Superintendent Nanette Hagen. “And we can keep people more comfortable in their work environment.”
Since 2002, Energy Trust has invested $2.2 billion in utility customer funds to deliver long-term benefits that help Oregonians manage through difficult years like 2020, such as adding $9.5 billion to the local economy—including $3 billion in wages, $503 million in business income and employment equivalent to 7,600 full-time jobs lasting a decade.
Energy Trust of Oregon is an independent nonprofit organization dedicated to helping utility customers benefit from saving energy and generating renewable power. Our services, cash incentives and energy solutions have helped participating customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural, Cascade Natural Gas and Avista save 4.6 billion on energy bills. Our work helps keep energy costs as low as possible, creates jobs and builds a sustainable energy future. Learn more at www.energytrust.org or call 1-866-368-7878.