Water quality and use
We monitor and take action when our operations affect water quality and temperature in ways that could have an impact on people and fish.
WATER QUALITY In 2013, we completed research examining the relationship between climate conditions, reservoir water quality, PGE operations and the development of blue green algae in Timothy Lake and the North Fork Reservoir on the Clackamas River.
Working with the USDA Forest Service, Clackamas Water Providers, Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Department of Environmental Quality, we can now advise the public on safe practices and conditions for drinking water or recreation during times when large populations of algae are rising to the surface.
WATER TEMPERATURE Reducing sun exposure
During the warmest periods of summer, increased solar exposure combined with decreased travel times of water through reservoirs can cause the water temperature to rise, causing problems for aquatic species.
In 2012, we created a new channel in Faraday Lake near Estacada, Ore., to help water travel faster through the reservoir and decrease solar exposure. This change, combined with a slightly lowered reservoir level, improves water temperature conditions in the lower Clackamas River.
Property and fleet management
We reuse and recycle as much as possible and consider environmental factors when developing new properties.
REUSING EXISTING PROPERTIES In 2013, PGE sold one of our historic properties, built in 1911. Before turning over the Hawthorne building in Portland to the buyer, PGE remediated the structure to meet the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality standards under the agency’s Voluntary Cleanup Program.
LEED® CERTIFICATION FOR NEW
PROPERTIES We use Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®
standards for all facility upgrades, remodels and new construction. In 2013, we built two new facilities according to LEED®
standards: the 14 | 2013 Sustainability Report
RESPONSIBLE FLEET MANAGEMENT Recycling oil to help families PGE has been recycling used motor oil for years and reclaiming the salvage
Readiness Center in Clackamas, Ore., and the Avery Regional Service Center in Tualatin, Ore. Some sustainable
features of the Avery facility include: • 95 percent of construction materials recycled
• 30 percent of materials locally sourced
• Rooftop solar panels • 100 percent LED lighting • Materials that emit low or no volitile organic compounds
• Electric vehicle charging stations • Low-flow water devices
Learn more about the Avery Regional Service Center
value of the oil. Beginning in 2014, we are donating those funds to HEAT Oregon to help families struggling to pay their energy bills. We recycle about 4,000 gallons of oil annually, which can help almost five households with their energy costs each year.
Reusing tires Instead of purchasing new tires every time a PGE truck needs a change, we work with a vendor to retread tires when possible. This requires 30 percent less energy and costs less than half what it would to purchase new tires. In 2013, we retreaded 329 tires — approximately 30 percent of all tires we replaced during the year. When tires can no longer be retreaded, our vendor sends them for recycling.
We are working with the Clackamas River Basin Council to plant trees along the tributaries of the lower Clackamas River to restore habitat and lower water temperatures. Our goal is to plant trees along 30 miles of shoreline during seven years.
2013 PROGRESS • Program launched • 5 miles of shoreline planted
In addition, in 2012, PGE directed more than $500,000 in funds to a shading program to plant trees along a Columbia River tributary to mitigate the heat load from our Port Westward operation in Clatskanie, Ore.
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