If you are looking for help with a unit installed in your home
OR 
you meet the program qualifications and are interested in signing up with a community partner, click the link below. 

Our Role in the Heat Response Program

PCEF has selected Earth Advantage to manage the purchase and logistics for equipment related to the Heat Respnse Program. We identify the most cost-effective and efficient cooling (sometimes cooling and heating—heat pump) units we can acquire. We then purchase those units, and have them delivered to our warehouses in Portland. We then distribute units to the selected Community Distribution Partners who are responsible for identifying recipients and installing units in vulternable community member homes.

Earth Advantage doe not identify or qualify who will receive units. We do not take inquiries from people who are interested in getting qualified to receive units, that is the role of the Community Distribution Partners


Heat Response Pick Ups & Installations 

Updated June 29, 2022
June 29 progress graph

Heat Response Program Updates

Important Program Information

Important Program Information

Find contact information for the Community Distribution Partners, get information to stay safe during a heat event, and read our FAQ. If you have been a recipient of a Heat Response Program cooling unit, you can access your user's manual and troubleshooting guide. 
Portland Heat Week

Portland Heat Week

Heat Week commemorates those lost in the 2021 Heat Dome, and brings us together to address heat concerns in our community. By sharing resources, data, and quality information with our growing network of heat adaptation professionals, Heat Week strives to bring concerned parties together to discuss our climate realities, understand our options, and communicate findings to the larger public. June 26 - 30, 2022. 
First Unit Installed!

First Unit Installed!

Thursday, June 9th, Earth Advantage® and the African American Alliance for Homeownership (AAAH) installed the first cooling unit in a Portland home as part of the Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund’s (PCEF) groundbreaking Heat Response Program. The program is working to install cooling units in the households of heat-vulnerable Portlanders who are elderly, living alone, have medical conditions or are low income.
Media Inquiries

Media Inquiries

Member of the press? Looking for an interview, photos, or more information on the program? Please fill out our media inquiry form.

Heat Response Program FAQ

The Heat Response Program is funded by the city’s Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund (PCEF). The program is working to provide life-saving and efficient portable heat pump/cooling equipment to low-income Portlanders, prioritizing those most vulnerable to the impacts of extreme heat fueled by climate change. Learn more at the city’s website.

If you or a loved one are experiencing a heat emergency, we urge you to seek a public cooling space or call 911. For more information about how to recognize the signs of heat exhaustion and how to find a cooling shelter or transportation during a heat emergency, visit https://www.publicalerts.org/heat

Our Community Distribution Partners are community nonprofits and housing providers that serve vulnerable people and households in Portland. They are selecting recipients based on eligibility and need. The equipment will be distributed to low-income Portlanders, prioritizing those who are elderly, living alone or, have medical conditions.  

At this point in time, only two Community Based Oreganizations are taking inquries. Check our information page frequently as information on which partner you may contact is updated. 

The City of Portland and its Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund (PCEF) have provided qualifications to the nonprofit Community Distribution Partners to prioritize those Portlanders most vulnerable to extreme heat events. They are selecting recipients based on eligibility and need. If you meet the low income program requirements and live in Portland, you can join a waiting list by calling the number below. Priority will be given to people who have are elderly, have medical conditions, or are living alone.

For more information on eligibility please visit the PCEF website here. ELIGIBILITY

The Community Distribution Partners will use these guidelines to assign recipients of the first year’s available units.

The goal for 2022, as outlined by the Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund, is to install 3,000 heat pump units (which also provide cooling) or air conditioning units in the first year. A total of 15,000 units will be distributed over the five year length of the entire program.

The first step is to look at the sticker applied to your equipment. Look for a sticker in the upper right corner, write down the name of the Community Distribution Partner that installed the unit, and note the date of installation. Some units may additionally have a troubleshooting card attached to the unit. The card provides a checklist for common issues to check on before calling your building maintenance or Community Distribution Partner who originally installed the unit.

Next, visit our list of Community Distribution Partners above and contact the organization listed on your sticker using the information provided. That Partner will then work with you to troubleshoot the problem.

For general program questions please visit the city’s PCEF website:
https://www.portland.gov/bps/cleanenergy

If you need to contact one of the Community Distribution Partners, please see our list of partners on this page. 

If you are a member of the press and wish to contact Earth Advantage, please use our media contact form:
https://www.earthadvantage.org/resources/media-inquiry-form.html

You can learn more about how the Heat Response Program is funded here:
https://www.portland.gov/bps/cleanenergy/about#toc-clean-energy-surcharge-and-revenue

The Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund (PCEF) provides dedicated funding for climate action that advances racial and social justice. PCEF was created by local ballot measure #26-201 in November 2018, which passed with overwhelming community support.

Earth Advantage is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit focused on helping to create an informed and humane residential real estate marketplace that: Acknowledges both the climate impacts of housing and the impact climate has on housing; Provides all homebuyers and renters with access to sustainability-related information about a home; Supports equitable housing outcomes, protecting those most vulnerable from the effects of climate change, and; Recognizes both the personal and societal financial value that climate-friendly housing creates. Earth Advantage's currently team is located across five states with a headquarters located in downtown Portland, Oregon in the PAE Living Building. The organization’s commitment to carbon reduction strategies is demonstrated by the 17,000+ individuals who have participated in Earth Advantage educational courses, the approximately 4,000 high performance residential units certified each year by our green building team, the 30,000+ homes with a verified Home Energy Score, and the over 2 million homes contained in our Green Building Registry.

To learn more visit our About Us page.

Earth Advantage was selected by the PCEF Committee and approved by the Portland City Council to serve as the manager of program implementation. They are tasked with identifying high-efficiency heat pump and air conditioning units, purchasing, and warehousing those units, and effectively distributing them to the community distribution partners (CDPs). In addition, Earth Advantage contractually manages the CDPs to ensure the timely, and accurate installation of units in vulnerable community members’ residences.

Community Distribution Partners (CDPs) are Portland housing providers and non-housing community-based organizations that serve low-income and BIPOC people in the city.

The CDPs will work with Earth Advantage to receive cooling units and install those units into vulnerable Portland community members' homes.

Unfortunately, the realities of climate change are already being experienced in the form of extreme weather events like the heat event witnessed in June of 2021 in Portland. The effects of climate change now require a dual approach, one that persists in efforts to reduce greenhouse gas, and the other to develop resilient strategies to counter the current impacts.

The units that have been purchased were chosen to maximize their efficiency, and in some cases provide heat as well as cooling. The heat pump units provide heat much more efficiently than resistance heating, and cool more efficiently than lower cost units on the market. The program recognizes that until large-scale building/home retrofits become a reality, this approach is necessary to protect Portlanders at risk.  

In the first year, the Community Distribution Partners will work to identify the most vulnerable members of their community and notify them they will be receiving cooling units. Beyond 2022, PCEF staff, the City of Portland, and Heat Response Program partners will work on including more vulnerable members of the city over the course of the five-year program.

2022 Implementation Timeline

The program runs from 2022 to 2026, and there are many steps involved along the way. The following are some of those steps in 2022 and our progress toward them:
Heat Response Program 2022 Timeline
In 2023, the process will start anew with even more units ordered and installed until vulnerable Portlanders are safe from extreme heat events. 
 

Types of Equipment

There are two general types of cooling units being installed in 2022. There are cooling units only, otherwise known as air conditioners, and there are what is known as heat pumps, which can additionally offer supplemental heating in winter. Both of these types are available in a portable form or an in-window form. The bulk of the units to be installed in year one are both heat pump and portable. The brands and types were all selected based on the highest efficiency and plug loads. 
Diagram of Heat Response Program cooling unit types