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RNP Press Release
October 1, 1999

Renewable Energy Group Praises New Oregon Electricity Restructuring Bill Signed Into Law

The Renewable Northwest Project today praised the new electricity restructuring law as "balanced and good for the environment." SB 1149, signed into law by Governor Kitzhaber on Friday, calls for reserving three percent of utility revenues to invest in new renewable resources, such as wind, solar, and geothermal, energy conservation programs and low-income weatherization. It also allows residential customers to choose green power, and calls for disclosure of power sources and their environmental impacts to consumers.

 
"This law will protect consumers, restore programs that benefit the environment, and continue low income programs," said Rachel Shimshak, Director of the Renewable Northwest Project. "It will allow all customers to choose clean, renewable resources for their homes and businesses and provide investments to implement those resources."
 
The bill had widespread support from such diverse allies as Industrial Customers of Northwest Utilities, American Association of Retired People, Citizens’ Utility Board of Oregon, and IBEW Local 125. The Renewable Northwest Project supported the bill as a part of the Fair and Clean Energy Coalition, a diverse group of advocates who worked to include protections for consumers and the environment.
 
The new law allows industrial and commercial customers of Investor-owned utilities to choose their energy supplier after October 1, 2001, but maintains a regulated rate structure for residential consumers. For residential customers, the bill provides a "portfolio" of options, including a "basic rate," a "market rate," and a rate based on "significant" use of renewable resources. The portfolio design continues to aggregate residential customers to give them the greatest market power.
 
The Renewable Northwest Project is a regional advocacy organization promoting the implementation of solar, wind and geothermal resources in the Northwest.
 
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For more information contact:
Rachel Shimshak, Director
Renewable Northwest Project
503-223-4544
 
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