Energy 2012

ENERGY 2012: An Introduction

George Aiken, the Vermont governor and senator, was an advocate for farmers. He saw the great potential of electric energy to ease the workload of animals and humans on the farm. He also worked hard to build a ruggedly independent Vermont public power system, independent of the private utility companies. In the ’30s and ’40s there […]

ENERGY 2012: Big Quebec and Power in the Green Mountains: Examining the Consequences

ENERGY 2012: Big Quebec and Power in the Green Mountains: Examining the Consequences

by Ken Russell Critics of the recent merger of Green Mountain Power (GMP) and Central Vermont Public Service (CVPS) say that Vermont has just lost something big. They say we have given away a bedrock chunk of a critical state asset and needlessly surrendered critical leverage over our own financial and political destiny, to some […]

ENERGY 2012: People Protest Big Energy

ENERGY 2012: People Protest Big Energy

Outside the New England Governors and Eastern Canadian Premiers Conference in Burlington on July 29, hundreds of people from throughout the region were protesting the impact of corporate industrial energy on the region’s lands and peoples. Abenaki tribe member Charles Megeso attended in solidarity with indigenous allies from the north fighting large-scale hydropower. “The Vermont […]

ENERGY 2012: The Public Service Board

Vermont’s public service board is a quasi-judicial regulatory body that often has final say in utility regulation in Vermont. A good number of people, like former GMP vice president Steve Terry, express great confidence in the diligence and integrity of the board, indicating the professionalism and competence of board members and what they view as […]

ENERGY 2012: Biomass Supply: Is There Enough?

ENERGY 2012: Biomass Supply: Is There Enough?

by Bob Nuner Whether it’s thermal energy to warm us, electrical energy for light or an industrial complex, or transportation energy to move asparagus or the latest gizmo from continent to continent, the question is, Will there be enough? At the end of a wood-chip–supply information video on forestbusinesnetwork.com, chip supplier Ken Gagnon said that […]

ENERGY 2012: Moving Toward Energy Efficiency with MEAC

ENERGY 2012: Moving Toward Energy Efficiency with MEAC

by Dan Jones What should each of us singly, and together as a city, be doing to adapt ourselves to a new, more challenging future of conscientious energy supply and demand? That’s the new, broader focus of the Montpelier Energy Advisory Committee (MEAC), which came into being about five years ago when towns around the […]

ENERGY 2012: Montpelier Couple Is in Plenty of Hot Water — Energy-wise, That’s a Good Thing

ENERGY 2012: Montpelier Couple Is in Plenty of Hot Water — Energy-wise, That’s a Good Thing

by Ricka McNaughton Who They Are: Montpelier couple Wayne Fawbush and Robbie Harold. She: A published author of historical fiction, an actor and a part-time consultant who “got religion” working in the (then-named) Vermont State Energy Office. He: Works for the Ford Foundation promoting economic development in impoverished areas of the U.S. Was a former […]

ENERGY 2012: ‘Warmists’ vs. ‘Denialists’ The Debate Rages On

ENERGY 2012: ‘Warmists’ vs. ‘Denialists’ The Debate Rages On

by Bill Holland The biggest forest fires in Colorado history. A Midwest drought, unprecedented since the 1930s, that will shrink this year’s corn crop by 23 percent from normal levels. Last summer’s drought in Texas that killed half a billion trees. The 2003 heat wave that killed 50,000 Europeans. And much closer to home, the […]

ENERGY 2012: Shape-Shifting Ownership at VELCO: Will It Be Enough? Public-Interest Advocates Wonder

by Will Lindner It’s a matter of record and a matter of fact: The Vermont Electric Power Company (VELCO)—the entity that owns the state’s entire high-voltage electric transmission system—has, for the first time in its 56-year history, a new ownership structure. This results from the recent approval by the Vermont Public Service Board of the […]

ENERGY 2012: What is the Best Home-Heating Energy Investment? Wood-Pellet Furnace Versus Weatherization Upgrade

by Andrew Boutin and Jeff Rubin With colder weather just around the corner, thoughts turn again to oil prices and thermal-energy-upgrade costs. “Thermal” is the industry’s word for a structure’s ability to stay warm in winter. There are two basic approaches. You can either improve the structure’s ability to retain heat through insulation and weather […]