Climate Caucus wants $200 million in federal relief funds for green agenda

On Thursday Vermont’s Climate Caucus discussed plans by state leaders to spend hundreds of millions of dollars to transform the way people use energy, transportation, heating and more.

According to Sen. Chris Pearson, D/P-Chittenden, climate change activists want to see Vermont spend up to $200 million in taxpayer funds. The money would come out of Vermont’s share of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021, the latest financial package from the federal government to spur economies amid continued COVID-19 lockdowns.

ARPA will provide more than $1 billion dollars for Vermont. The Green Mountain State has received over $4 billion in all since the lockdowns began. The influx of federal money has green activists seeing opportunity for their cause.

“We’ve had a bunch of emails — so for folks watching, thank you for your pressure that way to keep $200 million aside for climate. That’s terrific,” Pearson told the committee.

Vermont’s transportation budget is one place where lawmakers want to implement new green policies. The Senate is currently working on H.433, the annual transportation budget update. The FY22 version passed out of the House with millions allocated for green projects.

Bruce Parker/TNR

NO MORE FOSSIL FUELS: Vermont lawmakers would like to see hundreds of millions in taxpayer funds leveraged into climate change mitigation.

These projects include $600,000 on the electric vehicle subsidy program MileageSmart, $375,000  for an emissions repair program, and $50,000 to help Vermonters purchase motor-assisted bicycles.

Sen. Russ Ingalls, R-Essex-Orleans, is the only Republican on the Transportation Committee. He told True North in a phone interview Sunday that his colleagues should not get ahead of themselves on the electrification of travel.

“It’s a lot of money. The state is really moving toward, or trying to move toward, the electrification of vehicles,” he said. “We’re trying not to put the cart before the horse. We have over 600,000 cars in the state of Vermont and I think that we have less than 4,000 electric vehicles.”

He added that there are already multiple state incentives to purchase EVs on top of a big federal tax credit of up to $7,500.

Sen. Andrew Perchlik, D/P-Washington, told the committee there’s a big push for the electrification of transportation.

“There’s an electrification plan in there, there’s a lot of incentives for moving regular electric vehicles, but also looking at specifically low-income Vermonters and how we can move them to different transportation alternatives,” he said.

Rep. Mari Cordes, D-Lincoln, said that high installation cost for EV chargers is a tough hurdle.

“In my district installation costs are one of the biggest barriers,” she said.

Perchlik agreed with that notion, adding that green energy projects must compete with other basic infrastructure needs.

“There’s money for municipalities that they could use but my guess is the costs are too high,” he said. “They would probably rather use that money for infrastructure improvements like paving or culverts, but they could use it for charging stations.”

He noted they would like to have an electric charging station within five miles of every exit off the interstate highway system. There’s not a deadline for this target.

Rep. Kari Dolan, D-Waitsfield, said she would like to see more “smart growth” policies that discourage “non-vehicular travel.”

“What also has to go hand-in-hand is maintaining our land-use policies, maintaining smart growth principles, and how we develop to ensure that we are, in fact, providing for non-vehicular travel in our communities,” she said.

She added that reforms to the state Act 250, Vermont’s land-use policy, also should be looked into.

Rep. Rebecca White, D-Hartford, suggested that Vermont should move toward keeping residents out of cars altogether.

“We completely agree with what Representative Dolan said, which is thinking about how do we make these places not focused on car travel as the only way to get somewhere,” White said.

Michael Bielawski is a reporter for True North. Send him news tips at and follow him on Twitter @TrueNorthMikeB.

Image courtesy of Bruce Parker/TNR

10 thoughts on “Climate Caucus wants $200 million in federal relief funds for green agenda

  1. Climate change? Ask a dinosaur. Where do they think the material resources for these projects come from, how the equipment is built, and the energy to harvest and build? Logic has no business in this business. It’s a scam. When all is said and done, all these hoaxes will amount to the largest transfer of wealth the world has ever seen. We are approaching the end of the line and will likely be thrown back into the 1800’s due to the corruption and unabated crimes against humanity.

  2. The Climate Council is part of a Dem/Prog SOCIALIST takeover scam.

    It uses false enviro-hysteria, including:

    1) The Climate and Green-Energy frauds
    2) The full lockdown for Covid-19 fraud
    3) The illogical linking of linking these frauds (such as: to solve Covid 19, we have to solve Climate Change)
    4) The paid-and-planned terrorism, by Antifa and BLM, is condoned/encouraged by Dem/Progs,
    5) The universal mail-in ballot USA election scam

    ALL OF IT is false and fraudulent.
    It is all part of the “Great Reset and Remake of America”.

    The Climate-and-Covid scares are false crises, concocted by Dem/Prog wolves to stampede the sheep.

    The tactics used by the Dem/Prog GW propagandists are straight out of Lenin’s playbook.

    The UN Climate-gate emails, of a few years ago, provided further evidence of GW deceit.

    Those folks do not debate.
    They shout down dissent.
    They seek to harm those who disagree with them – straight out of Lenin.

    The purported “science” of GW catastrophes has been disproved many times, over the decades.
    Everyone of the warmists’ very-scary predictions, some 80 or so since 1970, have failed to happen.

    The most objective measure of scientific competence is the ability to correctly predict.
    The climate fraudsters have been 100% wrong to date.

    There is a powerful logic that says no RATIONAL person can be SO wrong, SO obtuse, for such a LONG time.
    They must have a COVERT agenda.

    The Dem/Prog wolves, proponents of both the very-scary Global Warming / Climate Change scam, and the Covid-19 Lockdown scam, know they are lying.

    Note also how many “RE leaders/RE stake holders” quickly linked the two scams, stating ”to solve Covid, we have to solve Climate Change”
    All of it is utter nonsense, not even plausible enough to be specious.

    Regarding the sheep, especially those who inhabit our universities and governments:

    The sheep, worried about tenure, spout their warmist’s views as absolute truths, without ever having spent sufficient effort to investigate them.
    The false warmist’s narrative fits their negative worldview.
    They never seriously questioned it by examining the contrary evidence.

    The policy incompetence regarding CO2 reduction of Vermont governments over past two decades is appalling.

    Spending on government energy programs, including Efficiency Vermont, has averaged about $210 million/y from 2000 to 2015, a total of at least $2.5 billion, but Vermont CO2 emissions increased from 9.64 million metric ton in 2000, to 9.99 MMt in 2015, a CO2 increase of 3.6%. WHAT A WASTE OF TAXPAYER / RATEPAYER MONEY

    Dem/Prog leftists seek to:

    1) Destroy the Vermont economy and our CONSTITUTIONAL freedoms,
    2) Aim to replace them with CENTRALIZED COMMAND/CONTROL

    Handing those Dem/Progs $200 million, AS A DOWNPAYMENT TO GET THE RE BALL ROLLING, will make the Vermont PEOPLE weaker and poorer.

  3. “According to Sen. Chris Pearson, D/P-Chittenden, climate change activists want to see Vermont spend up to $200 million in taxpayer funds. The money would come out of Vermont’s share of the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) of 2021, the latest financial package from the federal government to spur economies amid continued COVID-19 lockdowns.”

    For ACCOUNTABILITY purposes, it would be fair to voters and taxpayers for Climate Council folks to provide us a list of the measures, with

    1) A $dollar amount for each measure
    2) The RESULTING CO2 reduction of each measure,
    3) The list must total $200 million, and must provide the total CO2 reduction.

    Regarding ELECTRIC VEHICLES, the CO2 reduction of EVs is very minor when compared with high mileage gasoline vehicles.

    On a lifetime, A-to-Z basis, with travel at 105,600 miles over 10 years, the CO2 emissions, based on the present New England grid CO2/kWh, would be:

    NISSAN Leaf S Plus, EV, compact SUV, no AWD, would emit 25.967 Mt, 246 g/mile
    TOYOTA Prius L Eco, 62 mpg, compact car, no AWD, would emit 26,490 Mt, 251 g/mile
    SUBARU Outback, 30 mpg, medium SUV, with AWD, would emit 43.015 Mt, 407 g/mile
    VT Light Duty Vehicle mix, 22.7 mpg, many with AWD or 4WD, would emit 56,315 Mt, 533 g/mile

    1) The above shows, the NISSAN Leaf, a SMALL vehicle, would have a CO2 reduction of 56,315 – 25.967 = 30.3 metric ton over TEN years, If compared with an AVERAGE gas vehicle of the VT Light Duty Vehicle mix, which contains small and big vehicles.

    2) If the NISSAN Leaf is compared with my 30-mpg Subaru Outback, a vastly more useful vehicle than a NISSAN Leaf, the CO2 reduction would be only 17 metric ton over TEN years.

    Energy Action Network, EAN, prepared a report listing the measures required to “meet Paris by 2025”. That goal is mandated by the Global Warming “Solutions” Act, GWSA, and in accordance with the VT Comprehensive Energy Plan.

    One EAN measure is adding 90,000 EVs to reduce CO2 by 0.405 million metric ton/y, or 4.5 Mt/EV/y.

    EAN, claims, without providing calculations, the CO2 reduction of EVs versus VT LDV mix of gasoline vehicles, would be 4.5 metric ton per EV per year, or 45 metric ton in TEN years.

    The 45 metric ton CO2 reduction is a TOTAL FABRICATION, but the Climate Council, which does not know how to perform the calculations, takes the biased EAN numbers as the truth, whereas REALITY is quite different.

    Read this URL to be much better informed; see section “EAN report to Meet Paris”

  4. The turnkey capital cost to implement the Vermont Comprehensive Energy Plan, CEP, would be in excess of $1.0 billion/y for at least 33 years (2017 – 2050), according to a 2015 Energy Action Network annual report. If updated to 2021, the numbers would be about $1.25 billion/y for 29 years (2021 – 2050). See URLs.

    Spending on government energy programs, including Efficiency Vermont, has averaged about $210 million/y from 2000 to 2015, a total of at least $2.5 billion, but Vermont CO2 emissions increased from 9.64 million metric ton in 2000, to 9.99 MMt in 2015, an increase of 3.6%.

    That means, on average, these RE programs:

    – Have been expensive failures for 15 years
    – Led to higher energy prices, and higher other prices, than they would have been without those wasteful programs.

    Giving the same RE folks six times as much money per year, to implement the CEP, per mandate of the unconstitutional GWSA, would be very far beyond rational.

    Advice: When stuck in a pit, it is best to stop digging, and find something better to do, such as energy-efficiency buildings, which would reduce CO2 at low cost per metric ton, for many decades See Appendix.

  5. The true colors now exposed.

    It was never about covid, see the money isn’t going to make people right with the covid shut down.

    Nope, it was always about communism, aka the new world order! See this is what they are spending their time, our money on. It’s never about the environment, how is more communism going to make us better stewards of the land?

    Hey NWO pimps! Your jig is up,everyone knows what you’re up to know! Enjoy your last days in office, your time is up.

  6. It’s important that the people of Vermont know who in the Legislature is pushing for hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars to be spent in a fight that will have no impact on mitigating climate change.

    One of the legislators is Senator Andrew Perchlik, D/P Washington, he appears in the above video. Here is his Professional Experience directly from the Vermont Legislative web site :

    • Director of Vermont’s Clean Energy Development Fund
    • Founding Executive Director of Vermont’s renewable energy trade association, Renewable Energy Vermont
    • Board Member of the Solar Rating Certification Corporation’s Board and the ICC’s Renewable Energy Advisory Council

    Senator Perchlik is a sustainable energy activist who has worked in significant positions for the renewal energy industry…….The very industry that will benefit enormously from the hundreds of millions of dollars the Climate Caucus is pushing for…….This is a blatant conflict of interest…….This is wrong……Senator Perchlik and anyone else similarly situated should recuse himself or herself from this effort.

    It is behavior of this nature that earns Vermont a rating “D” in ethics.

  7. I just feel I need to put this into perspective:

    4 billion dollars divided by approximately 623,000 Vermont residents equals $6420 for every Vermonter. The average income of a household in Vermont Is around $61,000. The average number of people living in a household is 2.3.

    2.3 * $6,666 = $14,766

    That’s ~25% of median household income in a year.

  8. The last time politicians in Montpelier got their hands on $200 million in tax payer money was during the Shumlin administration when they promised to fix the health care system with a single payer model…….The politicians got the $200 million, flushed it down the toilet, didn’t fix the health care system and all with absolutely no return for the tax payers.

    The $200 million requested for climate change will result in the same out come…….Money wasted with no impact on climate change. The fact that Vermont can do nothing to mitigate climate change is from Rep. Scott Campbell who is pictured above among the Climate Solutions Caucus members.

    In an e-mail to me on 12/7/20, Rep. Campbell stated:”Let me start by repeating that no one, least of all me, believes Vermont can stop climate change — or even affect climate change.”

    Those words are pretty damming in light of the request for Vermont to spend $200 million. Before Vermont commits one dime to Global Warming Solutions Act, Rep. Campbell’s comments must be fully explained and a concrete case made to justify any sort of similar expenditure.

    It’s also worth noting that Biden Climate Czar John Kerry admits that the United States alone cannot mitigate climate change……Kerry has since added to his story saying that even if China is included in the effort, climate change cannot be mitigated…..

    For those interested below is Rep. Campbell’s full e-mail to me:

    Sent: Mon, Dec 7, 2020 11:15 am
    Subject: Re: Global warming Solution Act

    Hello Peter,

    Thank you for your thoughtful letter.

    Let me start by repeating that no one, least of all me, believes Vermont can stop climate change — or even affect climate change. It’s tempting to focus on that narrow issue because of the specific metrics in the law, namely the required greenhouse gas reduction thresholds (leaving aside the unfortunate name of the Act). The point of those requirements is that Vermont, like everyone else, is responsible for curbing its releases of fossil carbon into the atmosphere. The degree to which Vermont’s emissions affect global levels is immaterial and truly beside the point.

    In my view, the challenge for Vermont is coping with climate change. Vermont’s chief economic challenge is, as it has been for at least the last hundred years, building a viable and sustainable rural economy, outside Chittenden County. Climate change is significantly altering the nature of that challenge. I believe it is irresponsible not to understand and respond to how the economic challenge is changing.

    So my answer to your first question is, GWSA will not “mitigate” climate change, but it sets in motion preparing for it, building resilience, and mitigating the effects of climate change on Vermont’s economy and communities. Setting metrics for resilience and mitigation is part of the charge of the Climate Council.

    Your second question, about costs, is certainly valid. There will be costs associated with transitioning from the fuel source that has powered industrial civilization since its inception to another source. Naturally there are also benefits, as new jobs and business opportunities emerge. Most important, though, is recognizing there are also costs to business-as-usual. We are beginning to pay those costs already in storm cleanup and hardening of infrastructure, for example. There would be more costs in the future if Vermont were left flat-footed while global, national and regional economies adjust. The costs of preparing for climate change, as well as the costs of not preparing for climate change, are necessarily estimates, but neither is zero.

    Assessing what are the most reasonable and “prudent” estimates of those costs is, of course, the rub; I think the question hinges on the time horizon, and I would argue that public officials have an obligation to look as far into the future as possible. Thirty to fifty years from now, absent major course corrections, looks very bleak (major economic dislocations, mass migration and conflict, civil unrest and revolution — it doesn’t take Nostradamous to see what lies ahead).

    Lastly, to your point about citizen legislators being overwhelmed with complex information, as a newbie I couldn’t agree more. This is why setting up a framework whereby Executive Branch experts (as we hope agency and department heads are) and citizen experts are charged with analyzing data and trends and making recommendations, which are then developed into rules presented to policy committees and LCAR, and the fees and costs for implementation of which are put in budgets the legislature has to approved — all that is preferable to the intermittent, disjointed legislative process that includes new members every two years.

    I don’t know that these explanations are satisfactory to you. I know they weren’t to my committee seat mate Mark Higley of Lowell, who I have a warm relationship with despite our policy differences. But I hope I have conveyed that GWSA is not a whimsical, pie-in-the-sky fantasy. It is a serious response to a serious problem.

    Thanks again for writing,

    Scott Campbell
    Representative for St. Johnsbury
    (802) 622-4052
    Energy & Technology Committee

  9. $200 Million for starters, from us’ns, so they can tell us what to do and when to do it. This whole thing is a sham/scam with the climate change mantra being used as a way to legitimize, with our money!!!

    The climate has been changing since God rested on the 7th day. Florida has been under water 4 times throughout historical periods that have been documented. Thousands of years we are talking here.
    They can’t control the oil companies so by gory they are on a quest to make them disappear, just like VT Yankee.
    This is just as plain as the noses on our faces, folks. They need to be stopped.

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