Energy Efficiency Incentives: Energy Trust of Oregon

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Oregon hosts many programs to reduce energy consumption and increase renewable energy production in its industrial sector. One of these programs, the Energy Trust of Oregon, currently offers to pay up to half a project’s development cost, up to $200,000.00. The energy trust funds projects involving efficiency enhancements and renewable energy production up to 20 MW, with biomass being an accepted fuel source. The trust also offers rebates based on a project’s total annual kWh savings.

To qualify, applicants must be customers of Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural, Cascade Natural Gas, or Avista and contribute to the public purpose charge.

Companies wishing to receive funds from the energy trust first participate in a Strategic Energy Management assessment, an initiative that identifies opportunities to save energy throughout the operation. Many companies within the wood-processing industry have undergone the evaluation repeatedly to great effect. Boise Cascade’s Kinzua Lumber, for example, has participated in the SEM initiative for 14 years. As a result, it has decreased its annual energy consumption by 4.7 million kWh. Dave Minkler, the maintenance supervisor at the plant, said the initiative had enabled them to “cut energy costs by about $10,000 a month,” savings that keep the mill competitive, he said.[1]

Other businesses in the wood-product industry that have participated in the SEM initiative include Hampton Lumber Mill, Hardwood Industries, Inc., Boise Cascade, Contact Industries, Southport Forest Products, Woodcraft Industries (Woodcraft Industries), and SierraPine Composite Solutions. SierraPine’s success with the program is notable in that SEM identified shortcomings that, once rectified, reduced the company’s energy consumption by 11.3 million kWh per year and lowered annual costs by $588,700.00.[2]

For more information on the Energy Trust of Oregon, visit the program’s website. Other energy-incentive programs in Oregon are listed below.

Are you looking to reduce your energy consumption? Biomass Engineering & Equipment’s SMART Conveyors™ are among the most efficient drag systems available. For example, we recently replaced three, 50-hp drag conveyors with one, 30-hp T-Series SMART Conveyor™ at an OSB mill—a power reduction of four-fifths! When we compare our conveyors to pneumatic conveyance systems, the power reduction is even greater.

Read The Price of Inefficient Design to learn more about our conveyors’ efficiencies then contact us to discuss how we might reduce your energy costs.

Other Energy Programs in Oregon

Program Incentive Overview
Rural Renewable Energy Development Zones 3-5 year exemption from
local property taxes
Property with a renewable energy system is eligible for a tax abatement. Abatement caps are set in zones
around the state.
PGE Renewable Development Fund (Portland General Electric Co.) Grant Grants are available for new energy projects that will produce less than 10 MW of power and which are interconnected to PGE’s grid or delivered to PGE through a power purchase agreement.
Blue Sky Community Project Funds
(Pacific Power)
Grant, up to 100%
of capital costs
Grants are available for new renewable energy systems less than 10 MW and which are connected to PP’s grid.
Commercial Energy Efficiency Rebate Programs
Water & Light)
Rebate and energy loans Rebates and low-interest loans are available for efficiency improvements to manufacturing equipment and other technologies.
Energy Savings Plan Program
(Springfield Utility Board
Rebate on energy costs based on first-year kWh savings Rebates are available for efficiency improvements to manufacturing equipment and other technologies.
Existing Facilities
Energy Efficiency
Rebate Program
(Eugene Water
& Electric Board)
Rebate on project
cost up to 70% but
not exceeding $2,500
Rebates are available for efficiency improvements to manufacturing equipment and other technologies.


[1] Source: Hardwood Industries, Inc.

[2] Source: SierraPine Composite Solutions


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