VOTE:NO – Passed committee, At Desk upon adjournment.
Status (overview) of bill:https://olis.leg.state.or.us/liz/2020R1/Measures/Overview/HB4066
This bill authorizes PUC to allow electric companies to force ratepayers to pay for infrastructure to service electric vehicles. Requires electric companies and consumer owned utilities to use revenues from participating in the Clean Fuels Program for programs to accelerate transportation electrification and to operate under approved risk-based wildfire protection plans.
Personal Choice and Responsibility
In 2019 Oregon passed a 15% increase on public utility fees for operating revenue. Cap and trade, if passed, will add 13% to utility bills to go towards a new undefined enviro-slush fund. Now they want to push electric transportation at the expense of all ratepayers without proper study of the impact on uses.
Proposed HB 4135 requires electric companies to invest 1% of revenue in transportation electrification and allowed to recover their costs from ratepayers. This bill goes further allowing recovery of prudent investments or expenses that benefits system efficiencies or provides a greater choice for transportation electrification.
Electric vehicles still use fuels to generate electricity, and add an impact to the electric grid, which should be studied for rolling blackouts. When taking well-to-wheel emissions into account, all-electric vehicles emit an average of around 4,450 pounds of CO2 equivalent each year. By comparison, conventional gasoline cars will emit twice as much annually. In Oregon hydropower provides at least half of the net electricity generated. The greenhouse effect from the emissions from reservoirs may be equal to or greater than the greenhouse effect of the carbon dioxide emissions from an equivalent amount of electricity generation with fossil fuels. (according to Brazil’s National Institute for Space Research) Natural gas fuels, considered the “cleanest” fossil fuel emitting 50 to 60 percent less carbon dioxide than coal, is the second-largest share at one-fourth with coal third and wind, biomass, solar, and geothermal power providing the rest. It is not a proven fact that electrification of our transportation will accomplish anything but a burden on the economy and over stress the electric grid. Still, in the name of reducing emissions this bill directs electric utilities to work to reduce emissions outside of the electric sector through beneficial electrification of other fuel uses, such as electric vehicles and other forms of electrified transportation.