The City of Portland’s Climate Action Plan establishes a goal to reduce carbon emissions 40 percent by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. More recently, Portland City Council established a goal to be 100 percent renewable in all sectors of the economy by 2050.
The first Solarize campaign started as a community-led movement to help Portlanders overcome the financial and logistical barriers to installing solar power at their properties. Solarize Portland helped residents make an informed purchase and negotiated volume discounts on the price of installing rooftop solar energy systems. Solarize began in one Southeast Portland neighborhood and quickly spread to other parts of the city with support from the City of Portland, U.S. Department of Energy, Solar Oregon and Energy Trust of Oregon. These organizations provided seed funding, technical assistance in contractor selection, program design, project management and coordination, financial incentives, outreach support and educational materials. Three years of Solarize Portland campaigns resulted in over 600 solar installations and 1.7 MW of additional solar PV capacity at resident’s properties in Portland. Solarize has been replicated over 170 times in 18 different U.S. states and abroad.