Keep Oregon Cool

Oregonians are already taking action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and to plan for climate change. Do your part by making even small changes that, when added up, make a big difference. Interested in learning more? Check out these great resources.

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clean up your commute

The transportation sector is one of the largest contributors of greenhouse gas emissions.

  • Walk, bike, carpool, and take public transit whenever possible.

  • In the market for a new car? Consider buying or leasing a zero-emissions electric vehicle. Compare vehicles with this side-by-side tool.

  • Don't really need a car of your own? Check out car sharing options near you - such as ZipCar or Car2Go.

  • Talk to your employer about telecommuting options to reduce your travel one or two days each week.

  • If you have to drive, take these steps to save fuel: combine trips, go the speed limit, and make sure your car is serviced regularly with properly inflated tires.


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enhance your efficiency

Nearly a third of Oregon's greenhouse gas emissions come from heating, cooling, and powering our homes and businesses. 

  • Sign up for your utility's green power program. In Oregon, the two largest electricity providers, Portland General Electric and Pacific Power, have two of the most successful voluntary green power programs in the country.

  • Complete a Home Energy Score audit to find out how you can improve your home's efficiency.

  • Weatherize - seal air leaks, repair ductwork, and improve insulation. Wrap your water heat and hot water pipes.

  • Wash full loads - dishwashers and washing machines are most efficient when full.

  • Buy energy efficient and ENERGY STAR appliances.

  • Save water: moving and heating water uses energy. Fix leaks right away. Take short showers and turn water off when not in use.

  • Trade old incandescent or compact fluorescent bulbs for energy efficient light-emitting diode (LED) bulbs.

  • Use a programmable thermostat, and make sure heating and cooling is turned off when you're not home. Set your thermostat a little lower in the winter (throw on a sweater!) and higher in the summer (grab a lemonade) to save energy.

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shop smarter

Reduce your carbon footprint by making green and sustainable consumer choices:

  • Eat sustainably - choose local, avoid single-use items, buy in bulk, and find companies that make green choices in their production processes.

  • Bring reusable shopping bags with you instead of using store-provided paper or plastic. Avoid pre-packaged items and choose ones with no or simple packaging.

  • Buy energy efficient appliances or vehicles. Buy durable items and products that can be repaired.

  • When possible, buy vintage or gently used furniture or clothing. It's still new to you, without the added greenhouse gas emissions used to build a new product.

  • Recycle! When you are done using the goods you've purchased, be sure to recycle or reuse packaging. Make sure you know which items are accepted in your recycle bin.

  • Food waste is a large contributor to GHG emissions. Track perishables to help avoid wasting food. Compost your food scraps and yard waste - many haulers offer compost bins alongside trash pick-up.


Photo of window caulking and shopping cart via Flickr Creative Commons.