Climate and Energy Resources for State, Local and Tribal Governments

Coastal Oregon On Line Climate Assessment Program

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Coastal Oregon On Line Climate Assessment Program (COOL CAP)

Siletz, Oregon

Federal Funding: $323,305
Project Timeline: February 2011 – January 2014

Project Summary

The Confederated Tribe of Siletz Indians (CTSI) has a founding mission to care for, protect, enhance, and provide for the wise use of all the Tribe's natural resources in a manner that will benefit future generations. As part of fulfilling this mission, the CTSI expanded the Siletz Tribal Energy Program (STEP) to reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. These expansions included installation of solar panels on the tribal-owned Tillicum Fitness Center, a study of renewable energy potential in Siletz, and increased outreach to the tribal and local community about individual energy management.

The CTSI reduced energy-related GHG emissions through a variety of measures, including the installation of two solar projects—an 18 kW system on the Tillicum Fitness Center, and a 24 kW installation on a carport, which provides electricity for the Tribal Recreation Center. CTSI collected energy consumption data in tribal administration buildings and entered the data into EPA’s Portfolio Manager. CTSI is also maintained a database of household energy consumption data. Community members benefitted from the educational outreach surrounding the solar panels through public events related to energy-efficiency (including affordable weatherization strategies), solar energy, and waste reduction. CTSI also installed a total of 98 low-flow showerheads and 310 faucet aerators. It is estimated that these installations save the community about 380,400 gallons of water each year. Community members also received washing machines, CFL bulbs, refrigerators, and microwaves that will further reduce their energy usage.

Finally, program leaders have begun educating the community about the results of their study and encourage energy conservation practices at the individual level, such as reducing vehicle miles traveled, weatherizing homes, and other energy-efficiency improvements. The improvements resulting from this project are projected to reduce energy costs by 42% annually.

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Community Characteristics 

Population:                                 1,600

Area:                                         23 square miles

Government Type:                       Tribal

Community Type:                        Rural

Median household income:           $30,804

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Final Results

Projected Cumulative Results

Annual GHG Reductions

13.7 mt CO2e

1,189 mt CO2e

Annual Cost Savings



Full Time Jobs Created



Workshops Held



Households Reached



Annual Energy Savings

45 MWh


Annual Water Saved



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Lessons Learned

  • The Tribe found it is difficult to keep people excited about reducing greenhouse gas emissions, which cannot be seen or felt. Implementing a program with a noticeable benefit, such as lower energy bills, or making renewable power generation visible, such as through a publicly-accessible energy monitoring station, will help maintain support for programs like this one.
  • People can see the result of saving energy by looking at their power bills, but they cannot “see” greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The technology that the Tribe chose to use is leading edge and, thus, it was hard to find vendors that could put all the pieces together. Program coordinators assumed they could find many innovative installers that would jump at the chance to work on a novel project. However, this was a challenge. It is advisable to determine up front the actual feasibility of implementing technologies prior to committing to it.

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COOL CAP Solar TrainingSolar Training in June 2013.
Tillicum Fitness CenterSolar PV panels on Tillicum Fitness Center.
Solar PV panels installed on the Sprung Structure gymnasium carport.Solar PV panels installed on the Sprung Structure gymnasium carport.
Solar Celebration ribbon cutting by the Siletz Tribal CouncilSolar Celebration ribbon cutting by the Siletz Tribal Council.

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