Energy Trust of Oregon: What It Is and How It Works

One of Our State’s Best Non-Profits

The official line is that the Energy Trust of Oregon is an “independent non-profit that helps utility customers in Oregon benefit from efficient energy use and generating renewable energy.” But what does that really mean? It’s a kick-ass organization that helps Oregonians save money and stay as green as possible with their energy usage.

 

Residential Energy Support

Tips and Cash Incentives

Not only does the Energy Trust of Oregon help you evaluate your energy usage, they give you ways to improve it. Things like low-cost and no-cost tips and cash incentives. What, real, hard cash?! You’d better believe it! From discounts on insulation, windows, fireplaces, gas furnaces, heat pumps and solar options to instant rebates on lightbulbs and showerheads. Indeed, the list goes on and on.

New Home Construction Help

If you’re interested in buying a new home, Energy Trust of Oregon can help you find the most energy efficient builders in the business. They’ll walk you through the EPS (Energy Performance Score), what it means, and why it’s important. And the best part about it? The higher the EPS, not only the more energy efficient a home is — the more comfortable it is! By all means, I’m all about that kind of benefit.

 

Energy Payback Potential

And if you’re curious as to how much an energy efficient investment will be, Energy Trust of Oregon provides Energy Payback Potential, an online form that takes less than 5 minutes to fill out but lets you know what each investment will most likely return. (Upgrading single-pane windows, electric water heater, insulation, etc.)

 

Commercial Energy Support

Upgrades and Retrofits for Facilities

Energy Trust of Oregon knows that businesses do all they can to be profitable. But they’re usually trying to balance profitability with employee retention, which in part means a comfortable working environment. Oregon offers cash incentives in the following areas:

  • Lodging and Foodservice Equipment
  • Grocery
  • Computer Equipment
  • HVAC, Water Heating and Rooftop Units
  • Insulation: Gas and Electric Heat
  • Compressed Air
  • Emergency Generator Block Heaters
  • Welders
  • Forklift Battery Chargers
  • Lighting Incentives
  • Custom Incentives

(What’s more, they have some incentives for you guys up in Washington State as well!)

Tools and Training

Are you wondering what options make the most sense for your business? Oregon Energy Trust has you covered. With tips, tools,  certifications, and all kinds of training, they’ll not only help you save money, they’ll give you the confidence to strategize your energy decisions now and far into the future. (They even offer an Energy Management Technician program through Lane Community College that allows students to earn a degree online and then provides those students with industry connections so they can find a job they love.) And if you really feel really stuck, they provide on-site assistance as well!!

 

Industry and Agriculture

Energy Trust of Oregon partners with industrial and agricultural businesses to provide all kinds of technical assistance. This ranges from cash incentives (just like residential and commercial ventures) to better efficiency with industrial equipment, lighting, project-based work, maintenance, and operations strategy. Agriculture assistance in irrigation, nursery, and green house upgrades are yet another offering of this fantastic organization.

 

Renewable Energy

Have you ever wondered if solar energy is a viable option for your home or business?  Energy Trust of Oregon can walk you through the possibilities, as well as hydropower, biopower, wind, and geothermal electricity. (Um, did you even know that in some parts of Oregon you can harness geothermally heated ground water to produce electricity? I don’t know about you, but that kinda nerds me out in the best possible way.)

And did you know that our breweries can harness food waste and turn it into biogas, which can then be used to power operations? What a great way to feel better about drinking beer! (To be sure, restaurants, hospitals, dairies, and wood plants can jump in on the biogas action as well. But these are all the things Portland loves!)

 

Without a doubt, Energy Trust of Oregon does incredible things in this state. And as much as I love green living, I can’t help be a huge cheerleader for this non-profit.

 

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