Governor Kate Brown signed Executive Order 20-04 on March 10, 2020 directing multiple state agencies to take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and avoid the worst effects of climate change. Reducing greenhouse gas emissions directly supports the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality’s mission of protecting and enhancing Oregon’s environment.
The order includes a directive to the Environmental Quality Commission and DEQ to take actions necessary to cap and reduce greenhouse gas emissions consistent with science-based emissions reduction goals. Sectors and sources of emissions listed in the order are large stationary sources, transportation fuels, including gasoline and diesel, and all other liquid and gaseous fuels, including natural gas. DEQ’s Office of Greenhouse Gas Programs will be leading efforts to develop a new program or programs to cap and reduce emissions from those sectors.
Reports to the Governor
Under the executive order, DEQ must submit a preliminary report to Governor Brown by May 15, 2020 and a final report by June 30, 2020 regarding program options to cap and reduce emissions that can commence no later than Jan. 1, 2022.
These reports to the Governor do not recommend any particular program design recommendations. Both reports includes the following key sections:
- Initial legal review of EQC authority for a cap and reduce program consistent with the executive order.
- Proposed program development process, including opportunities for public and stakeholder engagement and a tentative rulemaking timeline.
- DEQ policy considerations and anticipated key program design elements.
- Next steps and how to stay informed on the program development process.
DEQ accepted comments on the preliminary report from its submission to the Governor on May 15 through June 15, 2020 for input for the final report.
The Office of Greenhouse Gas Programs held three listening sessions to walk through the preliminary report submitted on options to cap and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, discuss opportunities for stakeholders and the public to engage in the program development process, and answer clarifying questions about the report.