Energy Action Network (EAN) is dedicated to producing the highest quality research and analysis on a wide range of issues related to meeting Vermont’s energy and climate commitments. Through conversations with network members and public partners, we aim to identify and address key questions that stand in the way of advancing progress towards our goals and commitments. Below are the results of recent research projects completed by EAN members, the core staff, and our Senior Fellows. Research projects done by our summer interns can be seen here.
Recent Research Projects and Reports
By Leigh Seddon, EAN Senior Fellow
Vermont’s electric power portfolio (generation and purchases) has the lowest carbon intensity of any U.S. state. How Vermont regulators and state agencies calculate GHG emissions from electricity currently follow EPA and IPCC protocols, but is incomplete since “pre-generation” emissions (fuel-cycle) are not considered. Part 1 of this paper addresses ways that a fuller and more consistent perspective on electric emissions could supplement our current inventory.
Part 2 of the paper addresses the fact that our current estimates of emissions due to future load growth are often incorrect and understate the GHG reduction potential of beneficial electrification. Forecasting electric emissions over time (using a long-run marginal emission rate) is necessary to reflect how Vermont’s and the regional electric grid are evolving and will become less carbon intensive. It is also necessary to measure emissions on an hourly basis to understand the time-based impacts of new electric loads such as heat pumps and electric vehicles.
The EAN Clean Transportation Equity – Network Action Team had a goal of advancing a collaborative process to identify Vermonters’ challenges in the transportation and transit equity spaces and their experiences navigating existing clean transportation programs. In order to do this, they partnered with organizations who could host focus group conversations throughout the summer of 2022 with the communities they serve who experience unmet transportation needs, and/or who may be less represented in statewide conversations around clean transportation. The aim was to hear from Vermonters who experience high transportation cost burden and/or low transportation access, disproportionate transportation pollution, Vermonters with low income, youth, rural residents, those experiencing linguistic isolation, or those experiencing oppression or racism. This report highlights the outcomes of those focus groups.
Written by Rich Cowart and Chris Neme with advice, input, data, and support from the Clean Heat Standard Network Action Team, this whitepaper seeks to provide needed detail about the proposal for a Clean Heat Standard in Vermont, such as its context, what it would mean, and foreseen impacts.
This paper is meant to examine the implications of adopting the Advanced Clean Cars II regulations in Vermont. Such regulations would reduce criteria pollutants and greenhouse gas emissions of new light- and medium-duty vehicles, while increasing the number of zero-emission vehicles.
This paper’s purpose is to examine the benefits and costs of Vermont joining the Transportation & Climate Initiative on Vermont households. The Transportation & Climate Initiative Program (TCI-P) is a cap-and-invest program designed to reduce pollution from on-road gasoline and diesel fuels, while generating a new source of funding for clean and equitable transportation investments.
This whitepaper aims to presenting pathways for Vermont to meet its emissions reduction requirements, as set out by the Global Warming Solutions Act. Its purpose is to act as a reference for policymakers and members of the community to understand the necessary scale of adoption for technology and uptake to meet these emissions reductions goals.
A study completed by EAN 2021 Summer Intern Raquel Smith, analyzing how workforce would need to grow in the thermal sector to meet Global Warming Solutions Act emissions requirements, as specific actions for increased weatherization were debated by the Vermont Climate Council.
A study completed by EAN 2021 Summer Intern Ellie Curtis, studying how different populations in the state have the wealth and access to purchase electric vehicles and the incentives offered by the state for them.
A combination of the two studies done by EAN 2020 summer interns Jennah Slayton and Tara Santi as the world reacted to the calls for justice and equity in many protests across the US. These two interns focused on energy burden issues (in conjunction with fuel use) in the state and barriers to electrification and efficiency.
Led by Dave Roberts of VEIC, this was a part of the Vermont Clean Energy Future Initiative. It focuses on how the transportation sector ought to encourage EV growth, ways of reducing vehicle miles traveled, and the market conditions in the state at the time.
A report compiled by Center for Sustainable Energy, also as part of the Vermont Energy Future Initiative, to understand how cap-and-invest systems could be used in the state for both transportation and heating sector greenhouse gas emissions reductions.
Written by Richard Faesy of the Energy Futures Group, it details what the STEP program would do for Vermont, as “one of Vermont’s essential climate protection strategies.”
Written by Leigh Seddon of L.W. Seddon LLC, this report takes a comprehensive, birds-eye view of possible strategies in efficiency and renewable energy areas across transportation, thermal, and electric sectors.
Completed by Nancy Wasserman and Bob Barton of Catalyst Financial Group, this paper details financial opportunities, capital requirements, and potential mobilization strategies needed for Vermont to reach the goal of 80% of Vermont’s 2030 energy needs through increased efficiency and renewable sources.