Nine days without power: My ice storm story as an EWEB customer and employee
While beautiful and peaceful, buying a home on the edge of the forest and surrounded by trees has its tradeoffs. Moving “upriver,” I knew there would be more threats to prepare for, including Mother Nature’s seasonal surprises.Find Out More
EWEB achieves power restoration milestone over the weekend
Crews have so far restored power for 92% of customers who originally lost power at the height of the ice storm.Find Out More
Reenergized McKenzie River Valley transmission lines allow EWEB crews to restore power upriver
On Friday, a majority of EWEB crews tackled power restoration efforts upriver, after federally managed transmission lines were reenergized Thursday.Find Out More
EWEB estimates one week to complete power system restoration
On Wednesday, EWEB crews restored power for about 10,000 customers by repairing large equipment first.Find Out More
Second round of ice and ensuing thaw prompt mass power outages
On Wednesday, all EWEB crews, who have been working nonstop since Saturday, traversed EWEB’s service territory assessing the damage and restoring transmission lines and main power feeders.Find Out More
Power restored at EWEB’s water treatment plant
Crews restored electric power at EWEB's Hayden Bridge Water Filtration Plant Monday evening, allowing operators to switch off the generators and rely again on the grid. Meanwhile, EWEB crews brace for additional outages amidst second round of ice and during the coming thaw.Find Out More
EWEB crews making downed lines safe and restoring power across Eugene and the foothills
As EWEB works to restore electric service to customers affected by the ice storm, the customer-owned utility is following established policies and its “hierarchy of repair” to prioritize repairs that restore electric service to the greatest number of customers.Find Out More
Leaburg Decommissioning Action Plan
Plan details next steps through regulatory processes to begin dismantling Leaburg Dam by 2032.Find Out More
What’s ahead in 2024: General manager’s message to EWEB customer-owners
At the start of the new year, we back at accomplishments from 2023 and look ahead at what's to come in 2024.Find Out More
Start the New Year saving money with energy saving tips
We know that saving money is important to our customers. Using energy and water wisely is a great way to reduce your monthly utility bill, even as the costs of electricity and water rise. EWEB has several steps you can take to reduce your usage and even make your home feel more comfortable.Find Out More
Currin Substation: End of year update
EWEB Engineer Philip Peterson explains what's been happening in the final stretch to complete the substation rebuild.Find Out More
EWEB 2023 year in review
In 2023, EWEB invested in our community with grants, rebates and an array of other programs and measures aimed at fulfilling our core values of safety, reliability, affordability, environmental responsibility and community/culture.Find Out More
EWEB Recognized with Excellence in Communications Awards from American Public Power Association
We are proud to have been recognized with two Excellence in Public Power Communications Awards for 2023 from the American Public Power Association (APPA).Find Out More
Let's talk turkey. If a disaster strikes, is your family ready?
Many of us avoid discussing politics over the dinner table in the spirit of family peace and harmony. But here's a topic that can bring everyone together: emergency preparedness.Find Out More
EWEB To Hold First of Two Public Hearings on Proposed 2024 Budget and Prices
At the Nov. 7 Board of Commissioners meeting, EWEB staff will present a proposed budget that includes rate increases necessary to support utility operations and make needed infrastructure investments.Find Out More
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Revisiting EWEB’s Climate Policies during COP26
November 01, 2021
If the coronavirus pandemic defined the year 2020, climate change would summarize 2021. We've heard stories of devastation from across the globe, including record floods, landslides, hurricanes, and storms. Here in Oregon, we've endured massive wildfires, deadly heat waves, and extreme droughts.
Over the next two weeks, leaders from around the world will meet at the United Nation's 26th Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow, Scotland, to commit to reducing the catastrophic effects of climate change.
COP26 is an important follow-up to the 2015 Paris Agreement, which outlines a plan to prevent the planet from warming more than 1.5oC. At COP26, each nation will present its unique strategies to accomplish the promises made in the Paris Agreement.
It's being called "the world's best last chance to get runaway climate change under control."
The United States, the State of Oregon, and the City of Eugene each have defined their own climate goals, as well. As a public utility, EWEB represents the interests of our community, and works in partnerships with the City of Eugene, the University of Oregon, local nonprofit organizations and businesses, and our customers - our constituents - to reduce our community's carbon footprint, conserve energy, and manage costs of service.
In fact, EWEB's five elected commissioners approved a Climate Change Policy for EWEB in 2018. In it, the Board recognizes that climate change presents ongoing environmental, economic, and social risk to EWEB, our customers, our community, and the world. There are four areas in which EWEB recognizes its role in combating climate change, and one acknowledging the climate's impacts on EWEB business:
- Power Generation: The Board is committed to supporting an electric power portfolio utilizing low-carbon, renewable resources to the extent possible and practical without impacting safety or reliability.
- Status: Presently, EWEB's electricity resource mix is approximately 90% carbon free, with a 5-year average carbon intensity of 0.025 MTCO2e/MWh
- Carbon Measures: The Board authorizes, delegates, and directs the General Manager to participate in local, state, and regional efforts to encourage, develop and enact measures to mitigate carbon emissions in the energy sector that contribute to climate change.
- Status: Over the past five years, EWEB has been one of the few public utilities voicing support for carbon and climate legislation, including State cap and trade legislation, residential Energy Tax Credit (RETC) reauthorization, wildfire mitigation standards and workshops, as well as an active participant on the Mayor's Climate Recovery Ordinance Ad Hoc Work Group and City of Eugene Climate Collaborative Partners group.
- EWEB Operations: The Board further authorizes, delegates, and directs the General Manager to continue efforts to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions from EWEB's operations through the use of the Triple Bottom Line analytical framework, including impacts on the environment and climate.
- Status: Between 2009 and 2019, EWEB's cumulative operations-based emissions have decreased by 4,457 metric tons of MTCO2e, or 39%, using location-based accounting for electricity. This decrease is primarily due to a 49% reduction in fossil fuel fleet emissions and a 33% reduction in electricity-based emissions. Year 2020 operational emissions will be reported in December.
- Customer Decarbonization: The Board further authorizes, delegates, and directs the General Manager to assist customers with their carbon reductions through technical assistance and resources that support energy efficiency, alternative fuels, electric and water conservation, and smart electrification.
- Status: EWEB offers over 40 different GreenPowerTM, energy efficiency and conservation products/programs, including limited income and rental qualifying programs, electric vehicle charging and heat pump hot water heater incentives, along with commercial programs for lighting, refrigeration, compressors, and other applications. Since 2010, EWEB programs have saved at least 600,000 MWhs (estimated, data is being analyzed) of energy representing 175,000 metric tons of carbon emissions reduction (using regional electricity blend), averaging 15,900 MTCO2e/Year during that period.
- Impacts on EWEB: The Board directs the General Manager to evaluate and enact measures, as necessary and appropriate, to prepare for and minimize the effects of climate change that could impact EWEB's water and electric supply and infrastructure, damaging EWEB's resiliency and reliability.
- Status: EWEB has and continues to develop plans to enhance resiliency and response to disruptive events, including those impacted by climate change, most recently a Wildfire Mitigation Plan, 2020 Eugene-Springfield Area Multi-Jurisdictional Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan (Plan), and EWEB's Drinking Water Risk & Resiliency Assessment per the 2018 American Water Infrastructure Act.
Commissioners revisited EWEB's Climate Change Policy at the November 2021 Board Meeting.
As a community, we have made some inspiring progress towards cutting our emissions. EWEB has helped customers earn millions of dollars in rebates on their energy efficiency investments. Every day we see more and more electric vehicles on our streets. According to the City of Eugene's Community Greenhouse Gas Inventory, the we have decreased the carbon emissions of our buildings by "51% due to an increase in the share of low-carbon intensity electricity production generated or purchased by EWEB."
Throughout the next two weeks, while world leaders deliberate at COP26, we'd like to remind our community about our collective successes and how far we've come along together. While there is still much work to be done, by identifying clear, concrete actions we can all take, we can help create small victories that propel our momentum.
Follow along as we report some of our victories, share some exciting news about new programs and projects, and provide you with opportunities to take direct action to reduce your carbon footprint, cut down on your energy use and save money.