The House Environment & Energy Committee picked up S.5 again on Wednesday with testimony from Matt Cota (Lobbyist, Vermont Fuel Dealers), who shared that the “first misconception” being repeated is that this bill only affects large companies. Big companies are not the ones the bill obligates to buy credits, according to Cota. It is not size, but rather who owns title to the fuel when it crosses state lines that determines who is required to buy the credit; that could be a large company or a tiny company, a wholesaler or a dealer. Small dealers who are geographically located near borders are going to be disproportionately tagged as obligated parties.Read more
On Tuesday the House Environment & Energy Committee began taking background testimony on S.5, beginning with Representative Sibilia providing a recap of what happened with H.715 (The Clean Heat Standard bill vetoed by the Governor) last year, and passage of the Global Warming Solutions Act (GWSA). The GWSA created the Climate Council which in turn created a Climate Action Plan. She emphasized that Vermont needs to reduce emissions from the thermal sector, and one recommendation was for a Clean Heat Standard. It did not quite make it last year, but a lot of work went into it, and here we are again with an “improved” bill.Read more
Friends, the Senate is voting TODAY on a bill to introduce a carbon pricing scheme for home heating fuels that the Scott Administration says will increase the cost of heating fuels at least $0.70 per gallon. This morning I sent the letter below to all our Senators, but we need you to speak out as well. NOW is the time to make your voice heard. If carbon pricing on heating fuels will hurt your family's financial stability, Senators need to hear from you!Read more
Kitchel highlighted the importance of a “potential study.” It informs everything else, including the economic and technical feasibility of the plan. Based on Julie Moore’s testimony (Secretary, Agency of Natural Resources), this study needs to be the first step in this process, and must be added to the bill.Read more
After sitting nearly a week, S.5 was brought up in the Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday afternoon. June Tierney (Commissioner, Department of Public Service) testified that the $400K allocated in S.5 is not enough funding to achieve the goals for her department set out in the bill.
Tierney generally supports the idea of “potential study” to see what the impact will be and to discover if climate goals are practical and can be fulfilled. She pointed to questions like what is out there, what can be done, and at what cost?Read more