Carbon Bill Headed To Ways And Means Friday
House Bill 2020, dubbed the Clean Energy Jobs bill, cleared the Oregon Legislature’s Natural Resources subcommittee of the Joint Ways and Means Committee on Wednesday night and is headed to the full Ways and Means panel on Friday. The bill would cap and put a price on carbon emissions. Backers say the plan would allow Oregon to do its part to reduce climate pollution, while opponents argue it won’t make a significant difference in that regard, and would harm the state’s economy, particularly in rural areas. The bill passed the subcommittee with an amendment from Portland Democrat Senator Michael Dembrow. It says if the Oregon Supreme Court rules the proceeds are not bound by constitutional restrictions, the state can use some of the money generated by the program toward buying low to zero-emission fleets, upgrades to other diesel fleets, and creation of a program to trade in old agricultural equipment with a focus on improving engines most harmful to farmworker health.