OCF Projects    Past and Future

OCF has a library on renewable energy resources, watershed protection, and the impacts of the nuclear fuel cycle. We offer a free Solar Resource Guide, that is annually updated, containing a list of valuable resources on renewable energy and alternative living.  In addition we have helped provide solar energy demonstrations for local schools and colleges.

Solar Technology Workshops & IN-POWER

Over time OCF has sponsored a series of solar technology workshops and energy fairs, bringing energy experts like Johnny Weiss from Solar Energy International and Richard Perez of Home Power Magazine to share their wisdom and experience.  In the past we have produced IN-POWER, a Conservation, Renewable Energy, Solar Technology Fair, held in the summer at different parks in  Portland, Oregon.  These events have provided information and products available for individuals, businesses and communities to put themselves “in power” to create their own sustainable energy futures.

International Solar Energy Projects

OCF assists in the implementation of international solar energy projects.  We have provided equipment, grants, and/or volunteers for work on small scale renewable energy projects in developing countries. This includes a solar cooker fabrication, distribution, and education project in Mali, West Africa
; maintenance of a photovoltaic lighting and radiophone communication system for a Masai human rights organization in Tanzania, East Africa (See Lighting a Small Candle and Mali Solar Cooker Project Post Evaluation); participation in a “hands-on” Renewable Energy for the Developing World workshop in Costa Rica, financing of a feasibility study on the viability of solar applications in Palestine; and financial assistance for a renewable energy business run by land mine victims in Nicaragua.

OCF has also provided financial assistance for educational programs put on by Solar Energy International in Carbondale, Colorado.  We have given scholarships to members of a Masai  human rights group to attend these energy workshops (See Poster showing Lucas and Ava at SEI workshop) , and have also funded student participation in a Native American youth camp on solar energy.

Eva of the Masai maintaining batteries which are hooked to solar tracker.

Protecting our Environment

OCF has an ongoing commitment to protect our environment.  We support the preservation of Oregon’s watersheds and the restoration of native salmon runs.  Our work has principally focused on the Clackamas River Watershed where we have been successfully involved in litigation to save a wetland from a proposed gravel mining operation endangering its aquifers.

OCF has also provided financial assistance for protection of Pacific Northwest forests, and the preservation of a Costa Rican rain forest under the auspices of a local sustainable community.

Community Project Work

In November of 2003, OCF joined with other credit union members in successfully opposing the conversion of Columbia Credit Union, located in Vancouver, Washington, into a Mutual Savings Bank.  By doing so we helped preserve the use of its hard-earned equity for the benefit of all credit union members.   For extensive background information on this effort check out the archives at SaveCCU.

OCF has also provided financial assistance to a local documentary film maker, and a legal group defending the first amendment rights of individuals.

Democracy Integrity Project

Through its Democracy Integrity Project, OCF is committed to furthering democracy, be it in financial institutions or in government.  In order to resolve the problems we confront in our environment and communities, we as citizens must reassert our sovereignty, as well as  promote peace and justice on earth.  The lack of integrity in the election process is the equivalent of dry rot in the foundation of democracy.  If we do not restore integrity, democracy will no longer support liberty and justice for all.  In this effort to transform the global and empower the local we cannot afford to fail.

Future Projects Under Consideration

OCF is in the early planning stages for a renewable energy powered water supply system for an impoverished village in rural Tanzania, along with the installation of two solar vaccine refrigerators and a solar vocational training work shop.  We are considering the development of a mobile renewable energy supply system that can be used in Oregon and Washington for emergencies as well as an educational display.  We are also exploring the creation of a Native American alternative energy youth camp.