October 19, 2011

New Vermont energy plan stresses renewables

Its been more than a decade since Vermont had a comprehensive plan that lays out an energy policy for the coming decades.  Now a draft plan has been written and once its revised, it will be presented to the legislature.

Everyone agrees that our future energy sources should be reliable, affordable and clean - and that conservation and efficiency are important goals.  But the devil is in the details, and a number of concerns were raised at a recently concluded series of public meetings on the plan.  Some feel it doesn't move quickly enough toward renewable sources, others think it relies too much on wind development.  There are also concerns that the plan places too much emphasis on small scale renewable projects.

The plans drafters also point out that while much of the energy conversation has focused on electricity, nearly half of our greenhouse emissions are produced driving from point A to point B in our rural state. 

We talk with Public Service Commission Elizabeth Miller about the plan.  We also hear from Ben Luce, professor of physics and chair of sustainability studies at Lyndon State College, and Brad Ferland, president of the Vermont Energy Partnership, whose membership includes business and industry.

Send your questions or comments about Vermont's long range energy policy to vermontedition@vpr.net.


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