Planning for High Performance
With forward-looking plans and analyses as well as evaluations of past efforts, we have a solid foundation to design, build and deliver programs and services for customers. Together, these documents help guide our investments in low-cost energy efficiency and small-scale renewable energy generation.
Strategic and Action Plans
Our activities are guided by a series of five-year strategic plans, required by a grant agreement with the Oregon Public Utility Commission. Strategic plans establish broad goals and strategies, which are implemented through two-year action plans and annual budgets.
Planning with Utilities
As part of the utility planning process, we coordinate with Portland General Electric, Pacific Power, NW Natural, Cascade Natural Gas and Avista to quantify and set targets and funding for annual energy savings. The utilities rely on the energy savings we deliver to provide customers with reliable, least-cost energy.
The utility Integrated Resource Planning process typically follows a two-year cycle, with annual updates to adjust for market changes. Energy Trust’s role in the process includes developing 20-year efficiency supply estimates, a mid- to long-term efficiency strategy, year-by-year savings scenarios and modeling, and setting Energy Trust goals.
We also work with utilities to support a combination of small-scale renewable energy generation from solar, hydropower, biopower, wind and geothermal resources.
Evaluating for Effectiveness
Our commitment to rigorous, third-party evaluation makes us one of the nation’s most respected energy-efficiency organizations, gives us credibility with the utilities we support and ensures effective investment of ratepayer money.
We contract with third-party organizations to regularly evaluate our programs and program offerings. Evaluations allow us to validate the savings we deliver and verify that energy savings and generation occurred as a result of our efforts.
Evaluations are the feedback loop in our planning cycle—providing information that guide program refinements for future strategic plans and action plans.
What piece of the energy pie is energy efficiency?
In 2019, Energy Trust all-time efficiency savings provided nearly 14 percent of the electricity and more than 7 percent of the natural gas that Oregon utilities needed to serve customers.
What makes up the rest of Oregon’s energy mix? Hydropower contributes the largest portion of Oregon’s electricity resource mix, followed by coal and natural gas. Learn more on the Oregon Department of Energy’s website.