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Portland releases draft of peak oil plan

Portland, Ore—The City of Portland’s Peak Oil Task Force today released a draft report for public comment. The Task Force is accepting comments on its draft report until February 12, 2007, and expects to present a final report to City Council in early March. The draft report, titled “Descending the Oil Peak: Navigating the Transition from Oil and Natural Gas,” is available at www.portlandonline.com/osd/index.cfm?c=42894.

Task Force Chair Bill Scott said:

The Task Force findings illustrate the enormous economic and social vulnerabilities and opportunities that could result as fuel supplies cease to be abundant and inexpensive. The magnitude of this issue led the Task Force to explore far-reaching solutions. Our lead recommendation is that Portland cut its oil and natural gas use in half over the next 25 years.

The Task Force is a citizen advisory group established by City Council in May 2006 from a resolution brought forward by Commissioner Dan Saltzman. In preparing its report, the Peak Oil Task Force held over 40 meetings and involved dozens of policymakers, experts, and stakeholders.

The Task Force’s recommendations address rising oil and natural gas prices on two different levels. Most of the recommendations seek to reduce Portland’s exposure to rising fuel prices, anticipating the economic and lifestyle adjustments that will be needed in the future. Other recommendations prepare Portland to maintain community stability as volatile energy markets trigger conditions ranging from emergency shortages to longer-term economic and social disruption.

Two public forums will be held during the comment period, with dates, times, and locations posted at www.portlandonline.com/osd/index.cfm?c=42894 as soon as details are available. Comments from the public are strongly encouraged both at the forums and as written comments. Comments may be submitted on-line at the same website or by e-mail and hard copy to the Office of Sustainable Development.

The Peak Oil Task Force will consider all comments received by February 12, 2007, as it revises its report to City Council.

The Portland Office of Sustainable Development (OSD) brings together community partners to promote a healthy and prosperous future for Portland. OSD advances improvements and innovation in renewable energy, energy efficiency, waste disposal, recycling, high-performance green building practices, food systems, and sustainable purchasing. OSD implements programs, policies and partnerships that are key to community health, economic and environmental opportunities for Portland, its businesses and residents.

Editorial Notes: Contributor Jeremy O'Leary writes: "Time to dive in." Go directly to the report. Other EB coverage of Portland Peak Oil -BA

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