The use of fossil fuels is a main cause of climate change. Converting from gas to electric in our homes, our vehicles, and our landscaping equipment is seen as one of the most important ways that we can reduce our household greenhouse gas emissions that are causing climate change.
The City of Ashland Conservation Division offers multiple programs to help citizens save energy and reduce carbon emissions. These programs currently include free home energy reviews, new construction incentives, solar electric incentives, heat-pump water heaters, heating system and window upgrades, projectspecific incentives for commercial customers, no-barrier public charging, and zero emission vehicle incentives. Learn more about City incentives.
Use of energy in our buildings is one of the primary sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Ashland. Switching to locally generated solar power is one way to reduce your climate impact. Additionally, since the electricity provided Ashland Electric is generated by relatively clean hydropower, electrifying our buildings eliminates the potent greenhouse gases emitted when we use “natural” gas in our homes and other buildings for heating, cooking, and water heating.
In the past decade studies show that natural gas is a significant contributor to global warming. These findings are driving cities, counties, states, and individuals across the country to take steps to reduce natural gas use. In the Pacific Northwest, cities from Eugene to Bellingham have teed up bans on natural gas in new commercial buildings. As of January 2022, 54 California cities and counties have committed to phase out gas in new buildings.
“Natural” gas — more accurately described as “fossil gas” — is 90 percent methane, a highly potent greenhouse gas. Methane traps over 80 times more heat than carbon dioxide in the first 20 years after it reaches the atmosphere. Even though CO2 has a longer-lasting effect, methane sets the pace for warming in the near term.
When fossil gas is extracted, processed, and transported to our homes, methane leaks all along the way. See it for yourself thanks to infrared videos on YouTube. These “fugitive emissions” are much greater than previously believed, contributing signficantly to climate change. And as pipelines age, leaks will increase.
Learn more about electrifying your transportation from our local partner Southern Oregon Hybrid and Electric Vehicle Association
SOHEVA promotes the use of electric cars, trucks, buses, motorcycles and bicycles. Local SOHEVA members offers guidance on buying, leasing, sustainably fueling, operating and maintaining all forms of electric transit.
What Can We Do?
Stop Using/Use Less Gas
- Visit Electrify Ashland Now! [link to new page]
- Send us your questions [link to google form]
- Visit our partner Electrify Now! for great webinars and resources
- METHANE GAS: HEALTH, SAFETY, & DECARBONIZATION — Setting the record straight – A report jointly authored and supported by 64 organizations from the Pacific Northwest.
- Methane: A crucial opportunity in the climate fight – Environmental Defense Fund
- “Fossil (Natural) Gas: A Bridge to Nowhere” – Southern Oregon Climate Action Now
- From novelist to climate crusader: How one woman is working to put a stop to natural gas – Washington Post
- Electrification 101 – Resources for the Future
- California’s Cities Lead the Way to a Gas-Free Future – Sierra Club
- Register for our February Zoom Presentation: Electrifying Ashland: Why the Time Has Come [link to zoom registration]
- Register for our monthly How To’s for Homeowners monthly zoom chats [link to zoom registration]
- Create a plan for electrifying your home as your equipment reaches its end of life. Download our “So You Want to Electrify” Planning Guide for Ashland Homeowners [link to pdf]
- Add your name to the list of Ashlanders pledging to go electric [link to google form]
- Share your electrification story! [link to google form]
- Support a moratorium on new fossil gas hookups in Ashland [link to new page]
- Support increased financial assistance to low and middle-income households wishing to electrify in Ashland and statewide [link to new page]
- Volunteer for Electrify Ashland Now! [link to google form]
- Donate to Electrify Ashland Now! [link to support page]