Portland, Ore. — Today Portland General Electric announced the creation of the PGE Drive Change Fund to award local community organizations and businesses grants that will help electrify Oregon’s transportation sector. From transit buses and passenger cars to community service vehicles and electric bikes, the fund will award $1.75 million to electrification projects.
Funded by the sale of Oregon Clean Fuels Program credits, the PGE Drive Change Fund will return the value of the credits to local communities by advancing transportation electrification projects aimed at expanding mobility options and reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
“Transportation is the largest source of carbon emissions in the state, making an electrified transportation system critical to a low-carbon future,” said John McFarland, PGE vice president and chief customer officer. “PGE is committed to supporting an electric transportation system that serves everyone, and the PGE Drive Change Fund will help us do that.”
This year, PGE filed plans to invest the Oregon Clean Fuels Program credits to help make electric transportation available to everyone. Its proposals include the PGE Drive Change Fund to advance electric transportation in the area, a pilot program to help school districts buy electric buses, increased access to Electric Avenue charging stations for low-income customers and public outreach to raise awareness about the benefits of electric vehicles.
Community organizations, nonprofits and businesses can apply to the PGE Drive Change Fund for project grants. Successful projects will include those that expand access to electric vehicles, develop new charging infrastructure, and support education and outreach efforts to address barriers to electric vehicle adoption. The application is available now and submissions will be accepted from July 1 to Aug. 30, 2019.
Grant sizes range from $5,000 to $575,000. Awards from the PGE Drive Change Fund can cover up to 100% of eligible project costs. Applicants do not need to be PGE customers, but all projects must benefit the public in PGE’s service area. Projects that address the needs of underserved communities are preferred.
The PGE Drive Change Fund is supported by the sale of Oregon Clean Fuels Program credits, which PGE receives on behalf of residential customers who charge their electric vehicles at home.
The Oregon Clean Fuels Program, administered by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, aims to reduce Oregon’s greenhouse gas emissions from transportation by 10% from 2015 to 2025. PGE participates in the program as a provider of low-carbon transportation fuel, and the funds from the sale of credits PGE receives will be used to promote and support transportation electrification.
In 2018, PGE received credits from the DEQ for the previous two years, which PGE sold for approximately $5.5 million. In March 2019, following consultation with stakeholders, PGE filed its plan to invest these funds in various programs that will benefit local communities such as the PGE Drive Change Fund.
For more information about the fund, details on how to apply for a grant or to sign up for the upcoming informational webinar, visit portlandgeneral.com/drivechangefund.