As the climate crisis continues to unfold before us with its severe weather, droughts, fires and extinction of living species, it becomes apparent that the time for the cities of Lincoln County to develop climate action plans is now.
Actually, we are late in this endeavor as cities like Portland, Eugene and Corvallis have already done so and are presently acting on them by addressing things like building resilient infrastructures, exit plans in case of fires, food security and the reduction of the consumption of carbon-intensive products, building and energy analysis and the like.
Lincoln County has in place a resolution proclaiming the recognition of the climate crisis along with the cities of Newport and Lincoln City. These resolutions urge us to promote sustainability, energy efficiency and to help create a healthy environment. Lincoln City has already pledged $10,000 toward the creation of an action plan, hopefully to be followed soon by the rest of the cities in the county.
In addition to building resilience and encouraging preparedness, many jobs will be created along the way. The funding of this work will be made possible in part through the passage of House Bill 2020, a clean energy and jobs bill on course to pass into law by our state legislature. The revenue expected to be generated for charging the big carbon polluting industries in Oregon (those emitting more than 25,000 metric tons annually into our atmosphere) is estimated to be around $3 million. Forty percent of that will be designated to rural communities who have action plans in place. This is another reason for city councils throughout Lincoln County to pitch in and help pay for the creation of an action plan.
Finally, I encourage the citizens of Lincoln County to call or email their state senator (Arnie Roblan) and their state reprehensive (David Gomberg) and ask them to support HB 2020. We will all be the richer for it in more than one way.