Community-City Climate Action Plan Under Development
Last January the City Council made the creation of a climate action plan one of its goals for 2017. This was in response to a joint proposal by the Sustainability Advisory Board and LOSN that the majority of the work could be done by citizen volunteers.
A joint working group under the leadership of SAB Co-chair, Eliot Metzger, was formed and submitted to the council an outline of how the task could be accomplished. The proposed process is to focus on four action areas: Building and Energy, Transportation, Food and Consumption, and Land Use and Planning. The goal of the process is to determine what actions both our citizens and city operations can undertake that will significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions both over the short and long term.
SAB and LOSN members are already gathering suggested actions and will analyze these both for their ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and their fit with the values and quality of life desired by Lake Oswego residents.
Fortunately our community is blessed with citizens who have active experience in this area and are doing this at a time when we can gather best practices from the multitude of cities who have already gone through this process.
The planning team intends to complete its research and analysis by the end of the summer and provide a list of recommended actions to the city council and community in an open public forum this fall of what can be done now and what we can consider undertaking in future years. Stay tuned as this process unfolds.
City Reaching for New Heights in Green Building
LOSN members have been busy of late, providing insight and encouragement to city and school district officials to achieve higher than usual standards in the planning of new buildings.
Dorothy Atwood, Courtney Clements and Jan Castle have built on past activism to spur LOSD to plan new school buildings that are built to the highest seismic and sustainability standards so that they can be used immediately after a major earthquake and in the future could generate their own power, even when the electrical grid is down. Executive Director of Project Management Randy Miller is targeting Net Zero Energy for the new junior high which voters approved with the passage of May’s bond.
In support of this effort, LOSN organized a green building event in February for decision makers in the city and school district, and has been asked by the city to reprise it for the full city council and key staff members who will be planning the new city hall and police station, as well as the Planning Commission and Design Review Commission, who will be granting permits for both those and the school district’s projects. The purpose is to show them where the green building field is headed, what is practical and affordable today, and build support for utilizing the most advanced methods possible. The standard to reach for is the Living Building Challenge, which means a completely non-toxic building that generates all its power from the sunshine that falls on its site, uses only the water that falls on the site, and processes all of its own waste on site, like a plant or tree would do.
While we do not expect certified Living Buildings on any of these initial projects, holding that standard as an ultimate goal will change the way all these projects are conceived and will produce a much higher result than we would get from simply following a LEED checklist of green features to include. We want our decision makers to understand the future of building so Lake Oswego will end up with buildings that will be relevant and useful for decades to come.
Advocacy Success! An update on the PGE Boardman Coal Plant Replacement decision
In our March/April Insider, we let you know that you could help influence the decision on the PGE Boardman Coal Plant replacement. PGE had planned to build a natural gas plant to replace the coal powered plant when it closes in 2020 even though PGE's own analysis said that renewable energy could cover the energy needs. With your help, the PUC received 10000 comments advocating that PGE use renewable energy to replace the energy generated by the Boardman Coal Plant. Thank you!
What a Fun Eco Film Event!
The Dinner and an Eco-Film event in May overachieved our expectations. Over 80 people came to have dinner at the Lake Theater & Cafe followed by watching the touching film, An Organic Life. Folks loved the format. They enjoyed networking with friends, neighbors and new acquaintances while eating gourmet pizza and salad or choosing something wonderful off the menu. And fittingly for a theater known for their sustainable practices and farm-fresh, local products, the movie gave a moving testimonial into what it takes to grow organic produce. A special thanks goes to Sheri Richards for making this event happen and the Lake Theater and Café for providing such a wonderful repast and welcoming space.
We're planning to hold another Dinner and Eco Film event in the future. Let us know if you have a movie you'd like to see shown.
Summer Sustainability Tips
What better time to put into practice sustainability than the summer? If you are looking for some things to do, here are some suggestions.
Past Event: Building a Resilient Lake Oswego
What you will learn in this one hour six minute video:
Hear about the many improvements that have been made lately by all levels of government agencies and find out what you can do to prepare your own homes and neighborhoods, so that Lake Oswego can ride out this earthquake and bounce back as quickly as possible
Calendar of Current events
What: Lake Oswego Watershed Tour provided by the Oswego Lake Watershed Council
When: Third Thursday of every month, May-September
Time: 9:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Where: Meet at Uplands Elementary School, 2055 Wembly Park Road, Lake Oswego, OR 97034
Purpose: Learn about the Oswego Lake Watershed, watershed science, and issues affecting watershed health. Transportation is in individual vehicles and carpooling for the tours is arranged at the beginning of the tour. Tours are free, but pre-registration is required.
Note: Dress for walking