POL Government Elected Officials Commissioner Nick Fish

Welcome to Commissioner Nick Fish's website

Commissioner Fish is in charge of the Portland Water Bureau and the Bureau of Environmental Services.  He is also Council liaison to Elders in Action, Venture Portland, and the Regional Arts & Culture Council.




Plant trees and save money!


The Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) has a great seasonal program called Treebate that rewards Portland residents for planting trees.


Trees help contribute to clean rivers and healthy watersheds by keeping rainwater out of our sewer system. A large tree can absorb nearly 600 gallons of stormwater a year! If you plant an eligible tree, BES will credit your city utility bill! Your Treebate credit will depend on your tree’s size and future potential to help manage stormwater.   


Treebate is easy: purchase an eligible tree (or trees) and plant it in your residential yard. Then, submit a Treebate application along with your receipt. Applications are due by April 30. 


Check out BES’ website to learn more about Treebate.

March 30, 2015

Friday Roundup

March 27, 2015

Sakura Sakura

The cherry blossoms have bloomed, and spring is in the air!


Talented local photographer Motoya Nakamura has a stunning photo and video exhibit called Sakura Sakura


Sakura is the Japanese name for cherry blossom trees. Over the course of a year, Nakamura captured the beauty of the cherry blossom trees at Waterfront Park and the Japanese American Historical Plaza. 


The trees were gifts from Japan. They evoke cultural wonder, and symbolize Japanese-American history and friendship that is unique to our region. 


Sakura Sakura is funded in part by the Regional Arts & Culture Council.  It’s up through June 14th at the Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center. 


Sakura Sakura

Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center

121 NW 2nd Avenue

Portland, OR 97209


Photo courtesy of the Regional Arts & Culture Council.

March 26, 2015

Keeping our water clean

The Bull Run Watershed provides Portlanders with some of the best drinking water in the world.  Because it’s so high in quality, we only have to minimally treat our water to make it safe to drink. 


The Portland Water Bureau treats our water through a process called chloramination. Chlorine is lightly added at the source to protect us from possible harmful bacteria and micro-organisms. Ammonia is then added to ensure the disinfection remains stable throughout the system as it travels to our homes and businesses. 


The bureau tracks our water quality carefully, and adjusts chlorine levels as needed. The bureau will sometimes adjust levels during the warmer months of spring and summer, as warm temperatures could cause chlorine to decrease more rapidly (like evaporation).


Some people are sensitive to changes in chlorine levels. If your water smells like chlorine, you can minimize it by putting water in the refrigerator overnight, adding a slice of lemon or cucumber, or by boiling it. 


Visit the Water Bureau’s website to learn more about water quality, or call the Water Quality Line at (503) 823-7525.

March 25, 2015

The splendor of energy efficiency

Energy Trust of Oregon awarded the Bureau of Environmental Services (BES) for their dedication to green energy. 


Energy Trust is a statewide nonprofit that promotes energy conservation and renewable energy sources. 


As one of its services, the nonprofit provides cash incentives to public agencies and nonprofit organizations that work to conserve and generate renewable energy.  Recently, BES received an incentive check for $284,810 for one of their projects!


BES’ award-winning project involved making aeration tanks at the Columbia Boulevard Wastewater Treatment Plant more energy efficient.  The machines that blow air into the aeration tanks use more power than any other equipment at the plant.  Modifying those blowers to use less electricity reduces energy costs, which means long term cost savings for ratepayers!


This isn’t BES’ first time getting an incentive check from Energy Trust.  In 2008, the bureau installed a co-generation system that used biogas as fuel to generate power and heat for plant operations. 


Congrats to the Bureau of Environmental Services for their success and dedication to being energy efficient! 

March 24, 2015

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