We write to you at a moment of new beginnings. In 2021 we will be monitoring and sharing opportunities that arise from the changes happening in Washington DC. We will also be tracking and sharing information about a number of important initiatives here in Vermont, including the work of the Vermont Climate Council, the updating of the Comprehensive Energy Plan, and the work of the Network Action Teams that were selected at the EAN 2020 Summit.
Energy Action Network welcomed two new board members in December. Stephanie Yu is the Deputy Director of Public Assets Institute, a Montpelier-based nonpartisan nonprofit fiscal policy think tank working to improve the lives of everyday Vermonters. Steph brings experience in financial analysis and public administration. Rich Cowart is a Principal with the Regulatory Assistance Project, a global non-profit advising governments on climate and energy policies. Rich’s deep experience includes having launched Vermont’s utility-scale efficiency programs and advanced renewables during 12 years as Chair of Vermont’s PUC. He currently serves on the Board of VEIC and is a member of the Vermont Climate Council.
We are also very grateful for the contributions of out-going board members Mary Peterson and Jim Sullivan! Both have devoted years of committed and effective service to EAN and have helped to advance our mission of “more just, thriving, and sustainable future for Vermonters.”
EAN’s new Network Manager Cara Robechek is now officially aboard and welcomes communication from network members (firstname.lastname@example.org) and looks forward to reaching out and getting to know the network better in the coming weeks.
The EAN Staff Team (Jared, Cara, and Mei)
News from the World
Electric Cars Better for the Planet and Your Budget
New data shows that electric cars often save drivers money in the long run, despite higher up-front purchase prices.
Now that we are deep into the winter heating season, it is worth taking another look at the impact of heating choices on the Vermont economy. These graphics from our 2019 Annual Progress Report for Vermont compare how much of the money we spend on different heating fuels leaves the state vs. how much recirculates in the VT economy. Altogether in 2018, Vermont spent nearly $770 million on fossil heating fuels. Of that 67% left the Vermont economy entirely. In contrast, the efficient and renewable alternatives keep a much higher share of our energy dollars recirculating in Vermont, helping employ our neighbors and improving our local economy. Switching to renewable heating options also offers lower and more stable fuel prices, especially when combined with weatherization.
The Vermont Agency of Natural Resources (ANR) has released a Request for Information (RFI) to gather input and obtain information for ANR and the Vermont Climate Council (VCC) to use in the development and issuance of a Request for Proposals (RFP) to retain a contractor to provide consulting services related to emissions modeling, development of analytical tools, policy analysis and development, regulatory support, economic modeling and cost-benefit analysis and monitoring and program evaluation.
The Vermont Public Service Department has released a Request for Information (RFI) to allow the public to participate in identifying and clarifying policy and technology pathways to reach Vermont’s Energy Goals.
Vermont Council on Rural Development – Vermont Proposition
The Vermont Council on Rural Development, a neutral facilitator of public process, is excited to share the first draft of the Vermont Proposition: an effort to set non-partisan priorities for statewide action. The Proposition draft, based on input from thousands of Vermonters, shares a set of ideas to drive common action and advance a successful future for our communities, environment and economy. Now, VCRD is looking to you to help strengthen the Proposition. What’s missing? What could be improved? What do we need to do to be successful for the next generation? To learn more about the initiative, see the current draft, and share your thoughts, visitwww.futureofvermont.org
Efficiency Vermont – Better Buildings By Design Conference
February 2-4, 2021
Efficiency Vermont’s Better Buildings by Design is the region’s premier design and construction conference, featuring interactive learning about building durability, efficiency, and value for both residential and commercial projects.
The 2021 conference theme is “Resilient Energy”, and that concept has never been more pertinent than it is today. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, Efficiency Vermont will hold the 2021 Better Buildings by Design Conference online.
The DeltaClimeVT climate economy business accelerator seeks entrepreneurs for the Energy 2021 program. Startup ventures that focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions through energy-related products or services for residential and small business customers must submit applications for Energy 2021 by Feb. 19, 2021. Selection will focus on companies that are entering or currently at a pilot or demonstration stage and planning for scale.
The DeltaClimeVT business accelerator is managed by the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund (VSJF), an EAN member nonprofit organization committed to nurturing the sustainable development of Vermont’s economy.
The Vermont Total Energy Ticker
A Vermonter’s Guide to Residential Clean Heating and Cooling
This consumers’ guide provides information to help Vermonters decide which clean heating and cooling technology solution is right for their home.