Following the unexpected success of a grassroots referendum campaign funded by NW Natural, all new business and residential construction in Eugene will be required to use natural gas for heating, cooking, air conditioning, refrigeration and room lighting, effective immediately. Existing buildings will be required to convert to gas within six months.
“It’s about time Eugene got back to its environmental roots,” said Anne Marie Levis, chair of the Yes on Gaslighting campaign, which supported the measure. “Gas comes out of the ground. It’s organic!” Levis pointed out that electricity comes from wall sockets, which are unnatural and have been known to start house fires.
Stock prices in Northwest Natural Holding Co., which owns NW Natural, rose 113 percent on the New York Stock Exchange following the announcement that the referendum had passed with 5,775 voters, or 82 percent, saying “yes” on the measure.
Meanwhile, Eugene musician Mason Williams filed suit against the Gaslighting campaign for using his 1968 hit “Classical Gas” without paying royalties. Levis said the campaign had no money left to pay Williams after doling out $1,000 fees to 5,775 local consultants.