By: Jeff Mapes
Could a small electrical cooperative in eastern Oregon up-end the state’s renewable energy law?
That’s the question being asked as the Umatilla Electric Cooperative essentially tells legislators: Fix the renewable energy standards to satisfy our concerns or we’ll put an initiative on the ballot that largely guts the law.
Steve Eldrige, the co-op’s general manager, portrayed the initiative as the only way Umatilla could get the attention of state lawmakers and big energy players.
“They wouldn’t even talk to us until we started getting the signatures” for a ballot measure, he said.
The initiative would considerably ease renewable energy standards by allowing the region’s massive hydropower dams to count toward meeting the requirements. Read more