Bills to Watch in 2012 – Clean Energy

Vermont’s Clean Energy Future

H.468 AN ACT RELATING TO A RENEWABLE PORTFOLIO STANDARD AND THE SUSTAINABLY PRICED ENERGY ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM
Sponsored by Rep. Klein
Status: In House Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

S. 170 AN ACT RELATING TO A RENEWABLE PORTFOLIO STANDARD AND THE SUSTAINABLY PRICED ENERGY ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT PROGRAM, AND CLIMATE CHANGE
Sponsored by Sen. Lyons
Status: In Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

The goal: move away from dirty energy and fossil fuels by getting 80% of our the state’s electricity from renewable sources like solar, wind by 2025.  Including large hydropower, we’re at nearly 50% now, so 80% isn’t only within our reach, its the responsible thing to do.

Reaching our renewable electricity goals goes hand in hand with a flourishing, local renewable energy industry.  The details: build the number of local, renewable energy contracts through the “Standard Offer.”  To grow a strong renewable energy industry in Vermont, VPIRG is working to guarantee 50MW in local contracts each year for the next decade.  That would mean that roughly half of our new, renewable energy will come from community scale projects right here in Vermont.

Net Metering Fixes

H.475 AN ACT RELATING TO NET METERING AND DEFINITIONS OF CAPACITY
Sponsored by Rep. Klein
Status: In House Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

This bill improves the State’s net metering program and makes it even easier for Vermonters to power their homes and businesses with renewable energy.

Ban Hydrofracking

H. 464 AN ACT RELATING TO HYDRAULIC FRACTURING WELLS FOR NATURAL GAS AND OILPRODUCTION
Sponsored by Reps. Klein & Peltz
Status: In House Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

S. 184 AN ACT RELATING TO UNDERGROUND INJECTION WELLS FOR NATURAL GAS AND OIL PRODUCTION*
Sponsored by Sen. Lyons
Status: In Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

S. 144 AN ACT RELATING TO UNDERGROUND INJECTION WELLS FOR NATURAL GAS AND OIL PRODUCTION*
Sponsored by Sen. Galbraith
Status: In Senate Committee on Natural Resources and Energy

VPIRG is working to make Vermont the first state in the nation to ban the mining practice known as hydraulic fracturing.  Hydrofracking, as the practice is also known, has gotten national media attention recently because it has been linked to serious environmental problems and health impacts affecting communities across the country.

To prevent these problems before they start, VPIRG is coordinating the separate House and Senate bills to ensure that a complete ban on hydrofracking in Vermont passes this session.

*Note: These bills contain identical language.