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Clean Edge Report Confirms Portland and Oregon Leadership in Clean Energy Economy

November 03, 2011

 PDC and Business Oregon

Oregon ranks second in the nation in clean energy leadership and enjoys a number of key assets that set it apart in the clean-tech sector, according to a just-released report co-sponsored by the Portland Development Commission and Business Oregon. Oregon’s Clean Energy Economy leverages data from Clean Edge’s 2011 State Clean Energy Leadership Index, a subscription-based research service which produces comprehensive performance scores and rankings for all 50 U.S. states based on activity in three key clean-energy categories: technology, policy, and capital. 

"The Clean Edge Report again demonstrates that Oregon is one of the nation’s leading clean energy economies and is also poised for significant growth," said Business Oregon Director Tim McCabe. "Business Oregon and our partners will continue to leverage our successes in clean technology sectors to create more jobs for Oregonians and new business opportunities for Oregon companies."

"The Clean Edge report confirms our competitive advantage in talent, technology deployment, supportive government policies and capital attraction," said PDC Executive Director Patrick Quinton. "But we need to go beyond business as usual to strengthen our case for Portland as a center for clean energy growth and business success."

"This report affirms what we’ve seen as a network that supports promising clean tech business leaders – that we have exceptional talent in the clean tech industry here in Oregon," said Ashley Henry, director of Pivotal Leaders.

While the report acknowledges that the clean energy industry’s relative infancy, varying sector definitions and fast-moving changes in employment figures make clean energy jobs surprisingly difficult to track, two separate reports by the Pew Center on the States and the Brookings Institution put Oregon at or near the top in the percentage of jobs dedicated to the clean economy.

Other key findings from the report:

  • Oregon ranks #1 in the nation in LEED certified green building projects per capita in 2010.
  • Oregon ranks #2 for smart meter penetration nationwide.
  • Oregon ranks #3 in the U.S. in hybrid electric vehicle adoption.
  • Oregon ranks #6 in the U.S. in total installed wind capacity and total generation.
  • Oregon, Washington and California rank as the top three states for total EV charging stations as well as charging stations per capita.
  • Oregon ranked in the top five states for total clean energy venture investments, on a per-capita basis, in both 2010 and between 2008-2010.
  • For a smaller state, Oregon does fairly well in new patent generation, finishing ninth on a per-capita basis from 2002-2010.
  • Oregon is home to several top clean energy employers, including Solarworld (1050 employees), Sanyo (200), Vestas (400), Iberdrola (400), CH2MHill (1000), PECI (312) and Clear Edge Power (225).

With a focus on growing export opportunities for Portland’s clean tech firms, the We Build Green Cities marketing and branding initiative recently launched by the Portland Sustainability Institute, PDC, and Business Oregon demonstrates similar leadership findings at a regional level. 

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Clean Edge, Inc., founded in 2000, is the world’s first research and advisory firm devoted to the clean-tech sector. For more than a decade, the firm has delivered timely data, expert analysis, and comprehensive insights to key industry stakeholders.

Business Oregon works to create, retain, expand and attract businesses that provide sustainable, living-wage jobs for Oregonians through public-private partnerships, leveraged funding and support of economic opportunities for Oregon companies and entrepreneurs.

Pivotal Leaders The Pivotal Leaders network was created to help grow clean tech businesses in the Pacific Northwest by identifying and supporting innovative and outstanding vision and leadership.

Created by Portland voters in 1958, PDC plays a major role in making Portland one of America's most livable cities. As Portland's urban renewal and economic development agency, PDC is pursuing an aggressive strategy to create the most sustainable economy in the world, by connecting people and resources to achieve the city's vision of social equity, healthy neighborhoods, a vibrant central city, a strong regional economy, and quality jobs and housing for all.

Contact: Shawn Uhlman, PDC, 503-823-7994