Fighting Global Warming
I love the snow. I'm always sad when it melts. I just hope that it comes back next year, and the year after. But there is always that threat of global warming.
We can't do anything about it, can we? Well certainly not with that attitude (I think I just aged 30 years having said that).
Here in Vermont, important progress is being made on our short-term goal of creating Vermont jobs that address climate change, which will hopefully lead us to our long-term vision of stopping global warming.
The House Natural Resources Committee (where my seat-mate Rep. Rachel Weston is leading the good fight) just last week passed a bill called the Renewable Energy and Economic Development Act (personally, I think it could have used a snappier name, but it's fairly descriptive). The bill still has a lot of maneuvering before it can pass the whole House of Representatives, but I wanted to give you a heads up on this important legislation.
While this House bill aims to create more in-state, renewable electric sources (and jobs), the Senate is working on making power more efficient. The plan is that the two bills will be married into one major Climate Change Action Bill (again, they didn't consult me on the naming of the bills).
Here's some highlights of the House bill:
● Creating a clear goal: 25 by 25. That means that by the year 2025, Vermont will produce 25% of its energy consumed via renewable energy sources from Vermont’s farms and forests.
● Revising commercial building energy standards so that our buildings are built to the highest efficient standards possible.
● Investigating the use of smart electric meters, which tell consumers the best (and cheapest) time of day to consume energy.
● Creating a plan for wind developers that establishes a clear and predictable tax policy for newly built renewable power generation plants.
● Requiring all utilities to offer voluntarily green pricing options, or the ability to contribute to the clean energy fund.
● Creating a solar tax credit.
Remember, those are just some of the highlights.