MERKLEY APPLAUDS OREGON LEGISLATURE’S PASSAGE OF BILL TO END COAL ELECTRICITY, BOOST RENEWABLE ENERGY STANDARDS IN OREGON

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after the Oregon State Senate passed landmark legislation to end the usage of coal-powered electricity in the state and to increase the percentage of the state’s electricity generated from renewable power sources to 50% by 2040. The legislation, which was previously passed by the Oregon House of Representatives, will now go to the Governor to be signed into law:

“Climate change is already wreaking havoc on our farming, our fishing and our forests, and we need to pivot rapidly from a fossil fuel economy to a clean energy economy. I’m pleased to see Oregon once again paving the way with collaborative and innovative policies to keep us at the forefront of American leadership on this pressing issue.”

Merkley is a national leader in the fight to take on climate change. Last November, he introduced the Keep It in the Ground Act, legislation that would end all new leases for coal, oil, gas and tar sands production on federal public lands and waters. He also participated in the groundbreaking global climate talks in Paris in December, 2015. As Speaker of the Oregon House of Representatives in 2007, Merkley led the successful effort to pass Oregon’s first-ever Renewable Energy Standard.

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