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Wind Power News: Vermont


These news and opinion items are gathered by National Wind Watch to help keep readers informed about developments related to industrial wind energy. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of National Wind Watch. They are the products of and owned by the organizations or individuals noted and are shared here according to “fair use” and “fair dealing” provisions of copyright law.

February 20, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Cost of boosting renewable energy mandate gives senators pause

A plan to speed up Vermont’s adoption of renewable energy is hitting headwinds over concerns about potentially enormous costs. Senators seem to support a bill that would require electric utilities to get all of their power from renewable sources by 2030. The state’s renewable energy standard already calls for them to reach 75 percent renewable by 2032. So the new benchmark seemed manageable to members of the Senate Finance Committee. But the bill’s call to double – from 10 percent to . . . Complete story »

February 14, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

$1.2 billion partial cost of transition to ‘Fortress Vermont’ 100% instate renewable energy

For years, renewable electricity advocates have dreamed of powering Vermont with instate, renewable generation and power storage. Today, the Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee learned more about the likely costs of making that happen. The figures are sobering: $1.2 billion over five years for just two of the many necessary changes. Building a “Fortress Vermont” 100% instate renewable power-only system would cost more than $900 million in new back-up power storage costs alone, officials for Vermont Electric Power Company . . . Complete story »

February 13, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Divided House committee signs off on compromise Act 250 bill

A sharply divided House committee agreed to a series of sweeping changes to Vermont’s landmark land-use law Thursday, including a controversial provision that would limit the power of volunteer district commissions. The 94-page draft bill still has a long way to go to become law. But its approval by the House Natural Resources, Fish and Wildlife Committee marked a significant milestone in the nearly two-year-long effort to modernize Act 250. Even the bill’s supporters, however, acknowledged that changes to the . . . Complete story »

February 13, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Despite concerns, House committee approves Act 250 compromise

A key House committee Thursday approved a major overhaul of Act 250, Vermont’s development review law. After more than a year of work, the House Natural Resources Committee voted 6-3 to approve big changes to how Vermont reviews and directs development. Two members were absent. The bill would exempt from Act 250 review developments in designated downtowns. It would increase protections to wildlife connector areas and makes projects above 2,000 feet subject to Act 250 review. Middlebury Democrat Amy Sheldon . . . Complete story »

February 10, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Red lights on Lowell Mountains won’t dim soon

CRAFTSBURY – Green Mountain Power (GMP) issued an interim report to the Public Utilities Commission in January indicating a significant setback to installing an Aircraft Detection Lighting System (ADLS) for the Kingdom Community Wind (KCW) site on the Lowell Mountains. The report was presented to the select board at its January meeting. Preston Gregory, KCW supervisor, stated that recent “significant developments” warranted the update which appears to be another obstacle to installing an acceptable radar detection system on the mountain. The . . . Complete story »

February 4, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

State: Blittersdorf should pay $2,500 penalty in Kidder Hill case in Irasburg

IRASBURG – Vermont agencies say a property owner on Kidder Hill should face a penalty for erecting a wind test tower without state permission on the same land where he put up two small wind turbines and at one time considered two large ones. In a case that’s under investigation by the Vermont Public Utilities Commission, the Vermont Department of Public Service states that Kidder Hill property owner and renewable energy developer David Blittersdorf should face a penalty of $2,500 for . . . Complete story »

February 1, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Years later, Deerfield Wind impact on bear habitat in question

MONTPELIER – In testimony given to lawmakers Thursday at the Statehouse, representatives of the Vermont Fish & Wildlife Department said the 30-megawatt, 15-turbine Deerfield Wind Farm on Green Mountain National Forest land has affected the habitat of black bears in that region. That message, offered to House Committee on Natural Resources, Fish and Wildlife, was a portion of hearings regarding a rewrite of Act 250, Vermont’s land use law that was designed to keep the state rural and environmentally friendly, but . . . Complete story »

January 31, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Holland wants PUC to put an end to Dairy Air Wind

Holland Selectmen want to make sure that renewable energy developer David Blittersdorf can’t restart his former plan for a wind turbine on Dairy Air Farm. Blittersdorf announced Jan. 16 that he was dropping the Dairy Air Wind project because the political climate under Vermont Gov. Phil Scott is hostile to wind energy. He urged Vermonters to challenge the governor and change laws to favor wind projects. The Holland Select Board on Jan. 24 asked the Vermont Public Utilities Commission to . . . Complete story »

January 30, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

Lawmakers hear about enforcement and energy curtailment for Global Warming Solutions Act

MONTPELIER – Two policy experts from out-of-state in New England visited the House Energy and Technology Committee last week to talk about the do’s and don’ts of implementing Vermont’s latest green energy mandate bill, the Global Warming Solutions Act. Some ideas lawmakers heard during the hearing include the importance of pursuing policy changes even when “democratic consensus” might be absent, and how the state could use advanced communications technologies to turn off appliances in people’s homes. Ken Colburn, co-chair of the . . . Complete story »

January 28, 2020 • VermontPrint storyE-mail story

No large wind projects are under consideration in Vermont for the first time in years

There are no longer any large wind projects in development in Vermont, pausing the passionate debate over wind turbine siting that had animated communities and political campaigns only a few years ago. The developers of Dairy Air Wind, which was planned as a single turbine on a dairy farm in the Northeast Kingdom town of Holland, announced Jan. 16 that they would stop all development activity, citing “a current political environment that is hostile to wind energy.” The project, led . . . Complete story »

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