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News Releases
McKay Creek near the Crooked River at Ochoco Preserve.
McKay Creek near the Crooked River at Ochoco Preserve.
PGE and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs grant $1 million to the Deschutes Land Trust for Crooked River habitat restoration (Photo) - 10/19/21

The project is the latest in a series of efforts to aid migratory salmon and steelhead in Central Oregon 

Portland, Ore. (October 19, 2021) – Portland General Electric (PGE) and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, co-owners of the Pelton Round Butte hydroelectric project on the Deschutes River, today announced a $1 million grant to the Deschutes Land Trust for habitat restoration aiding migratory salmon in the Crooked River. The grant was awarded through a special round of funding from the Pelton Round Butte Fund, through which PGE and the Tribes have contributed more than $27 million to 57 habitat and water quality projects in the Deschutes Basin over the last 15 years.

The Land Trust plans to use this funding to complete the first phase of a major restoration at Ochoco Preserve, the organization’s 185-acre wetland and wildlife preserve outside of Prineville, Oregon. The project includes floodplain restoration, development of side-channel and wetland habitat, and construction of an acclimation pond for juvenile fish.

“Supporting projects in the Crooked River is one of the best ways we can improve conditions for both juvenile and adult fish,” says Megan Hill, PGE natural resources manager and director of the Pelton Round Butte salmon reintroduction program. Since 2010, PGE and the Tribes have been advancing an ambitious, long-term effort to restore sustainable populations of salmon and steelhead to the Deschutes Basin, including the Crooked and Metolius Rivers. “We’re finding that more returning adult fish are choosing to travel up the Crooked River compared to the other tributaries upstream of Lake Billy Chinook, so it’s critical for these fish to have high-quality habitat when they arrive.”

The first phase of restoration at Ochoco Preserve, beginning in Spring 2022, will focus on McKay Creek – a tributary to the Crooked. Construction crews will realign the creek to its historic floodplain and add more side channels, wetlands and natural structures to improve habitat for fish and wildlife. The Land Trust will also build an acclimation pond that will eventually be used to hold juvenile spring Chinook and summer steelhead instream prior to release, a practice that helps fish imprint on the river’s unique scent and improves their chances of successfully returning as adults. Finally, part of the restoration process will also include identifying locations for future trails and educational sites so the Land Trust can share the preserve with the community.

"The Land Trust is so grateful for this funding from the Pelton Round Butte Fund,” said Rika Ayotte, executive director of the Deschutes Land Trust. “It helps continue our long-term partnership with PGE and the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs to conserve and restore habitat for salmon and steelhead throughout Central Oregon.”

In addition to supporting habitat restoration in the Crooked River, PGE and the Tribes also recently provided funding to the new fish ladder at Opal Springs Dam and to the Crooked River Water Quality Partnership – a group developing a strategic action plan addressing water quality in the Crooked River Basin. Together, these investments are helping create accessible and hospitable fish habitat in this high-impact river system.

 

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About Portland General Electric Company

Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is a fully integrated energy company based in Portland, Oregon, with operations across the state. The company serves approximately 900,000 customers with a service area population of 2 million Oregonians in 51 cities. PGE has 16 generation plants in five Oregon counties, and maintains and operates 14 public parks and recreation areas. For over 130 years, PGE has delivered safe, affordable and reliable energy to Oregonians. Together with its customers, PGE has the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the U.S. PGE and its 3,000 employees are working with customers to build a clean energy future. In 2020, PGE, employees, retirees and the PGE Foundation donated $5.6 million and volunteered 18,200 hours with more than 400 nonprofits across Oregon. For more information visit portlandgeneral.com/news.

About the Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs

The Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Oregon, is based in Central Oregon with a membership of over 5,000 Tribal Members from the Warm Springs, Wasco, and Paiute tribes. Learn more at warmsprings-nsn.gov

About Deschutes Land Trust

The Deschutes Land Trust envisions a future of strong and healthy natural and human communities—where we work together to conserve and care for the lands that make Central Oregon an incredible place to live, work, and grow. As Central Oregon’s locally-based, nationally-accredited land trust, the Deschutes Land Trust has conserved and continues to care for more than 17,523 acres since 1995. For more information on the Deschutes Land Trust, contact us at (541) 330-0017 or visit www.deschuteslandtrust.org.

PGE awards seven cleaner, quieter electric school buses to area school districts - 09/27/21

PORTLAND, Ore. — Portland General Electric announced six winners of the 2021 Electric School Bus Fund, paving the way for seven additional electric school buses to be on the road serving Oregon students in 2022.

Using funding from the Oregon Clean Fuels Program, the Beaverton, Centennial, Gresham-Barlow, Hillsboro, Portland and Salem-Keizer school districts were chosen based on their commitments to meet the needs of underserved communities and incorporate the buses more broadly into student education around climate science.

“Electrifying transportation is a key driver of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and an important step toward reaching our goal of 100 percent clean energy for all Oregonians,” said Maria Pope, president and CEO of Portland General Electric. “Seeing kids of all ages, our future, traveling to and from school in electric buses is a moment of pride for all of us at PGE, and we are excited to partner with school districts across the state.”

The six districts will each receive funding to purchase an electric school bus, install charging infrastructure, and receive technical and training support. This is the second year of electric school bus competitive grant awards. Last year, PGE awarded buses to five school districts, several of which are now on the road.

The Electric School Bus Fund is covering the incremental cost of the electric school buses (the difference in cost between a standard diesel bus and an electric bus) and the total installation of charging infrastructure. PGE is also providing technical assistance to school districts throughout the process, including site assessments, cost-benefit analysis, vehicle and charger selection support, and driver and mechanic support. In return, participating school districts will work with PGE to share their insights and learnings with other school districts interested in electrifying their bus fleets. For the second year, PGE is working in partnership with Pacific Power to support the Portland Public Schools’ electric school bus and related infrastructure.

Transportation is the single biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in Oregon and a major source of other air pollutants. Benefits of the electric school buses include:

Cleaner air
• Electric school buses reduce greenhouse gas emissions by more than half compared to a diesel school bus
• Electric school buses have zero tailpipe emissions and reduce carbon monoxide emissions and nitrogen oxide emissions—which have significant negative health impacts, including asthma—by more than 80% than a diesel school bus

Safety and comfort
• Electric school buses are quiet, reducing noise pollution in neighborhoods
• Drivers and students are better able to communicate with each other

Lower cost
• Electricity is less expensive than diesel, and prices are more stable over time
• Electric school buses have far fewer moving parts and are expected to reduce maintenance costs by as much as 50%

About Portland General Electric Company
Portland General Electric (NYSE: POR) is a fully integrated energy company based in Portland, Oregon, with operations across the state. The company serves approximately 900,000 customers with a service area population of 2 million Oregonians in 51 cities. PGE has 16 generation plants in five Oregon counties, and maintains and operates 14 public parks and recreation areas. For over 130 years, PGE has delivered safe, affordable and reliable energy to Oregonians. Together with its customers, PGE has the No. 1 voluntary renewable energy program in the U.S. PGE and its 3,000 employees are working with customers to build a clean energy future. In 2020, PGE, employees, retirees and the PGE Foundation donated $5.6 million and volunteered 18,200 hours with more than 400 nonprofits across Oregon. For more information visit portlandgeneral.com/news.