The PCEF Heat Response Program launched in June with funding from the Portland Clean Energy Community Benefits Fund. On Friday, July 29, the program marked the installation of 1,000 efficient cooling units for primarily low-income Portlanders, as well as the elderly and those living with medical conditions or living alone. The installation goal for this inaugural year is 3,000 units.
Managed by Earth Advantage, the Heat Response Program was designed as a five-year approach to install efficient heat pump cooling units in the community. During last year's heat emergency, residents in multi-story apartment buildings experienced particularly severe impacts, including multiple deaths. So this type of housing is also prioritized in the program’s approach.
The Heat Response Program will continue to install a total of 15,000 life-saving cooling units over the next five years, year round. You can track the installation progress on the Earth Advantage program dashboard.
Because of its distribution network – a mix of housing providers and community-based organizations – the program is not intended to serve as first responders in emergencies.
If you, friends, families or neighbors are suffering from the heat, call 211 to access cooling resources. Call 911 for emergency medical assistance.
How to qualify for a cooling unit
Eligible Portlanders may access a portable or window cooling unit through this program.
Recipients must reside at a Portland address and have an income that is 60% or less of the Area Median Income, adjusted for household size. Installation is prioritized for people with low incomes who also have two or more of the following risk factors:
- Are more than 60 years of age.
- Have medical conditions that increase risk of heat-related illness.
- Are living alone.
Note: The nonprofit Community Distribution Partners – not the City of Portland – are selecting qualified recipients and providing installation in people’s homes.
Visit the Heat Response Program page for application details and connections to community distribution partners.