Oregon’s House of Representatives narrowly passed HB 2020 on Monday.
The bill places a cap and price on greenhouse gases from the largest emitters in Oregon, and reinvests the proceeds into the state’s clean energy economy to create jobs and reduce pollution.
Lawmakers held 21 hearings, including six “roadshows” that provided an opportunity for Oregonians in Medford, Newport, Bend, Baker City, The Dalles, and Springfield to participate.
There was significant opposition to the bill at the hearings...especially those that were held in rural areas.
The bill is expected to cause gas prices to rise 22 cents a gallon and will cause increases in electricity and natural gas.
Governor Kate Brown released the following statement:
"We see the effects of climate change in record temperatures, declining snowpack, reduced summer streamflow, water scarcity, increased wildfires, and elevated public health risks," said Governor Brown. "We have a historic opportunity to protect our children's futures by building long-term competitiveness while creating good jobs and improving access to affordable energy."
Republican lawmakers opposed the bill. “This is the most destructive piece of legislation to ever come through the House of Representatives,” said House Republican Leader Rep. Carl Wilson (R-Grants Pass). “Workers will tremendously suffer under Cap and Trade. Thousands of jobs will be lost. Wages will decline, gas prices will climb, and family budgets will be strained. Climate change is a global problem, not an Oregon problem. Oregon’s workers should not be punished for the reckless environmental policies of China and India.”
Cap and Trade will unleash a new wave of cronyism designed to benefit the Democrat supermajority and hollow out Oregon’s industries. It will do virtually nothing to reduce global warming. Instead it will be a wrecking ball to the futures of Oregonians working towards the American Dream. “The supermajority has passed Cap and Trade for the worst reason possible: because they can,” added Leader Wilson. “Cap and Trade is an act of economic vandalism. What transpired today was an abuse of power, and the victim is every Oregonian that works for a living.”
The bill now moves to the Senate where the margin is expected to be more narrow.