By Rob Roper
Vermont’s secretary of Natural Resources, Julie Moore, incurred the ire of Clean Heat Standard (S.5) supporters when, in late January, she presented the Senate Committee on Natural Resources & Energy with her estimate that their bill would result in an additional $0.70 charge (carbon tax) on home heating fuels. Advocates for the program that would force sellers of oil, propane, natural gas, and kerosene to purchase “carbon credits” in order to sell their product — the cost of which will be passed along to customers — had been trying their best to hide that number from the public.
Now that the Clean Heat Standard bill has passed the Senate and moved to the House, Moore is back defending her math, this time in the House Energy & Environment Committee — and once again she is incurring ire.
After Moore gave a detailed breakdown for the committee about how she arrived at the $0.70 per gallon number, which is if anything conservatively low, Representative Gabrielle Stebbins (D-Burlington) sternly admonished Moore to “lighten up on it.”
It is worth noting that Stebbins works for the Energy Futures Group, which would certainly benefit financially from passage of S.5.
Stebbins tried to take Moore to task on a few points. Her first admonishment was over why Moore would even have the nerve to do this cost analysis in the first place. “We have a Climate Council, which is an administrative entity, and we have a Climate Action Plan that has been doing analysis. I’m concerned with this analysis. I don’t know why you chose to take it when we have a Climate Council that has hired people to do analysis.”
The answer to this is, of course, that for two plus years the Climate Council, like pro-S.5 legislators and activists, has assiduously avoided any reference to what its policy recommendations, including the Clean Heat Standard, will cost. Senator Chris Bray (D-Addison), who chairs the senate committee that passed out S.5, repeatedly argued that we can’t know what S.5 will cost precisely because that analysis hasn’t been and (in his false assertion) it can’t be done until the details of the program have been established.
Just for an example of the Climate Council’s attitude regarding cost analysis, at the August 29 Transportation Task Group meeting Gina Campoli asked why they didn’t come up with an estimate of how much money the state would need to raise to fund the transportation recommendations in the Climate Action Plan. “For example,” Campoli said, “we need X amount of incentives and X amount of charging infrastructure. We’re spending X amount now. Then there’s a gap… to get to the numbers of electric vehicles that are necessary. This would be the easiest calculation. It’s going to require a certain investment on the part of the state both to underwrite the incentives and the cost of the infrastructure. … What’s the gap to get to the numbers we need?” The reaction to Campoli’s suggestion: crickets. And no action ever taken to find the answer.
But this is basically what Moore did for her calculations on thermal sector costs. She took the mandated actions in under the Clean Heat Standard, which are a known quantity, the average cost of these actions, for which we have good estimates, multiplied them together and divided by the number of gallons of fuel oil sold, which is another known quantity. After subtracting federal funds and individuals covering their own upfront costs, and some other adjustments, Moore came to the conclusion that this is going to cost Vermonters who heat with fossil fuels about $1.2 billion over four years, or $0.70 per gallon. Somebody needed to do this because nobody else dared. So, thank you, Julie Moore!
Next Stebbins attacked Moore’s assumption that it would take a 90% subsidy to get people to swap out their perfectly good furnaces for a cold climate heat pump.
Moore explained, “The way S.5 is structured, it needs to meet the 2030 requirements of the Global Warming Solutions Act…. What I am saying is that in order to incentivize enough Vermonters to weatherize their homes [and install heat pumps, etc.] a very high cost-share will need to be provided because we’re not meeting people where they’re at…. If you have a functional [fossil fuel burning furnace] or water heater in your basement that has years of useful life left, it will require a very high incentive to encourage you to change it out. The way we’re going to drive people to change it out is through the sale of ‘clean heat credits’ that we will be able to use [the revenue from forcing fossil fuel users to buy] to provide incentives. And because S.5 is required to meet these targets, it is effectively going to require incredibly generous incentives to achieve the rate of implementation that’s been established here.”
In fact, Richard Cowart, who is a principal architect of the Clean Heat Standard, testified to the senate committee about a similar British program that ultimately required cases of 100% subsidization of such projects in order to get people to participate and meet their mandates. So, again, Moore is being conservatively low in her estimates.
Stebbins’ last attack on Moore’s $0.70 number had to do with how the Secretary calculated the cost of heat pumps and other technologies over time. “We’ve seen what the cost of an iPhone has been market-wide in terms of decreased costs,” said Stebbins. “Did you factor in… all of those market externalities?”
Moore admitted she did not. Probably a good thing for Stebbins that she didn’t, both in terms of the iPhone comparison and the actual cost trends for things like heat pumps. The original high-end iPhone, the 3G, in 2008 cost $499. The high-end iPhone 13 Pro Max cost $1099 in 2021. So, there’s that. And while many technologies do drop in price over time, heat-pumps and especially the labor necessary to install them are getting more expensive, not less.
Vermont is not the only state pushing people to adopt this technology. Subsidy fueled demand is rising and logistical issues are limiting supply. Strong demand coupled with low supply for both the products and the professional services necessary to install the products probably means Moore’s assumptions regarding future costs for swapping in heat pumps and heat pump water heaters in the foreseeable future are actually low.
So, Secretary Moore and everybody else out there, definitely do not “lighten up” on pressing for more and better answers on what a Clean Heat Standard will cost Vermonters. Right now we should all be able to agree it’s a lot.
Rob Roper is a freelance writer who has been involved with Vermont politics and policy for over 20 years. This article reprinted with permission from Behind the Lines: Rob Roper on Vermont Politics, robertroper.substack.com
20 thoughts on “Rep tells ANR secretary to ‘lighten up’ on informing citizens about cost of clean heat standard”
It’s all such a scam. The people running the state of Vermont should be ashamed to show their faces.
They are the worst of the worst, lower than a snakes belly.
Oxford Scientist says “Wind Power Fails On Every Count”
And this is aside from the disaster they create when they bury these old turbines in the ground in other states. How about these legislators volunteer to bury some spent solar panels and wind turbine blades in their own backyards? Maybe when you all demand a “You Own It- You Bury It” Bill that will wake them up to some reality of just how ‘Green’ their ideas are NOT.
This is a just a plan like this other event was a plan, for the same results….love this guy. Love, love, love him…I remember seeing the video when it first came out in 2020. enjoy..
He outlined the “Build Back Better”, “you will own nothing and be happy” plan perfectly.
All the while they have us fighting each other and fearing the world is going to end when really they want our form of freedom and governance to end, so they can reap the benefits of being our land lord, job lord, religious lord, educational lord……..aka our slave master. Welcome to the new world order.
Here is a wonderful ode for us to watch……how can people be so evil? It is in our nature when left to our own free reign.
What has gone on, is so corrupt. It is not the only thing….so is this charade they are trying to pull over our eyes.
Most people can’t see the lies. There is a reason for that, they are not educated to question themselves. There is a group of people that are called to question every thought in their head. They are taught to discern lies from truth, good from evil. This is why their teachings are banned in every dictatorship, every theocratic country, as it is the antidote to what we have going on in this world.
Peace, Love and Joy. These are their fruits.
Pride, Envy and Fighting….where does that come from? Who promotes it? Why?
What stock options does Gabrielle Stebbins hold? What is in her or her family’s portfolio? The key to the issue is profiteering and it is widely reported how. Review how Nancy Pelosi and her husband have made timely stock purchases. Then, review Peter Welch’s gains from similar investments. When the CCP came to visit our State House in February 2019, and how China manufactures the majority of components and equipment for this “climate change” initiative. Michigan just announced a new battery plant over $700 million dollars owned by the Chinese and Chinese nationals will be working there. We are being sold out and instead of writing about the myth of climate change, start learning how to speak Mandarin!
She is following Pelosi’s footsteps. They’re all corrupt to the core. Yet the climate cultist follow them like lemmings.
Yeah just shut up and pass the bill, we can increase the cost after it’s implemented. What a bunch of nazi’s we have in our bloated useless government. If this don’t wake up the sheep who vote in these leftist ijits nothing will and VT is toast. A smaller commie failed state like big brother California.. There has been a 0.3 increase in global temperature over the last 43 years this climate hoax is a assault on the citizens pocketbook for nothing.
If the people of VERMONT knew what we were doing we couldn’t steal all their money, take away their rights and make them own nothing and be happy! **. Stop telling them the truth! They can’t know it! We must keep filling their minds with fear! Censor! Cancel those who don’t fall inline!
** a popular phrase amoung all the 21st century dictators and future slave owners.
HEAT PUMPS ARE MONEY LOSERS IN MY VERMONT HOUSE, AS THEY ARE IN ALMOST ALL NEW ENGLAND HOUSES
Comparison of CO2 Reduction in my House versus EAN Estimate
CO2 Reduction due to HPs is minimal
CO2 of propane was 850 gal/y x 12.7 lb CO2/gal, from combustion = 4.897 Mt/y
The CO2 reduction is calculated in two ways using the:
1) EAN method, based on commercial contracts, aka power purchase agreements, PPAs (market based)
2) ISO-NE method, based on fuels combusted by power plants connected to the NE grid (location based)
See Appendix for details.
Market Based: Per state mandates, utilities have PPAs with Owners of low-CO2 power sources, such as wind, solar, nuclear, hydro, biomass, in-state and out-of-state. Utilities crow about being “low-CO2” by signing papers, i.e., without spending a dime.
CO2 of propane was 550 gal/y x 12.7 lb CO2/gal, combustion only = 3.168 Mt/y
CO2 of electricity was 2,489 kWh x 33.9 g/kWh = 0.084 Mt/y
Total CO2 = 3.168 + 0.084 = 3.253 Mt/y
CO2 reduction is 4.897 – 3.253 = 1.644 Mt/y, based on the 2018 VT-DPS “paper-based” value of 33.9 g CO2/kWh
Location Based: CO2 of power sources connected to the NE grid
CO2 of propane was 550 gal/y x 12.7 lb CO2/gal, combustion only = 3.168 Mt/y
CO2 of electricity was 2,489 kWh x 317 g/kWh = 0.789 Mt/y
Total CO2 = 3.168 + 0.789 = 3.897 Mt/y
CO2 reduction is 4.897 – 3.897 = 0.939 Mt/y, based on the 2018 realistic ISO-NE value of 317 g CO2/kWh
Cost of CO2 Reduction is (2059/y, amortizing – 204/y, energy cost savings + 200/y, service, parts, labor)/0.939 Mt/y, CO2 reduction = $2,188/Mt, which is outrageously expensive.
EAN Excessive CO2 Reduction Claim
EAN claims 90,000 HPs by 2025 would reduce 0.37 million Mt of CO2, in 2025, or 0.37 million/90,000 = 4.111 Mt/y, per HP.
EAN claims 100% displacement of fuel, i.e., gas, propane, fuel oil.
Those EAN claims are true, only for highly sealed/insulated houses, which represent about 2% of all Vermont houses.
In addition, the average Vermont house would need 2 to 3 HPs to achieve 100% displacement.
HP Operating Cost During Heating Season
If HPs are operated at low temperatures, they have low COPs, which would result in a greater electricity cost per hour than using the displaced fuel.
At 27.6% Fuel Displacement: Vermont houses with HPs, operated down to about 28F, would require 2,085 kWh/y, to deliver 21,400,000 Btu, at an average COP of 3.34, to displace 27.6% of space heat, at an electricity cost of $417/y, per VT-DPS survey
At 35% Fuel Displacement: My HPs, operated down to 15F, would require about 2,489 kWh/y, to deliver 20,220,000 Btu, at an average COP of 2.64, to displace 35% of my space heat, at an extra electricity cost of $498/y
At 100% Fuel Displacement: My HPs, operated down to -10F, would require about 8,997 kWh/y, to deliver 57,290,000 Btu, at an average COP of 2.07, to displace 100% of my space heat, at an electricity cost of $1,799/y.
This would displace 850 gal of propane, at a cost of 850 x $2.339/gal = $1,988/y.
My energy cost savings would be 1,988 – 1,799 = $189/y, on an investment of $24,000!!!
Technically feasible is one thing, logistically feasible is quite another.
EVERY PRIVATE ENTERPRISE PROJECT MANAGER KNOWS ABOUT LOGISTICAL FEASIBILITY
It took 3 people for 8 hours times 3 days, to install my 3 heat pumps with 6 heads, for $24,000
140,000 heat pumps by 2030? Are you kidding me?
EAN likely came up with that number in one of its glossy, rah-rah “studies”
Legislators swallowed it hook line and sinker
Folks are finally looking at the logistics and the-year-by-year budgets
Some are even courageous enough to say the unsayable
Folks are finding there are are not enough $BILLIONs in Vermont to make the HP dream for some/nightmare for others come true.
Remember, you’all could do nothing!
Take a year off to get your bearings, and find the world is spinning as before
To make matters worse, EAN estimated much greater CO2 reduction per HP than is actually the case, by using “rosy” assumptions.
That means HPs would contribute less to the unreasonable 2030 goal
I ECONOMICALLY displace only 35% of my fossil Btus with electricity Btus, in my well-insulated/sealed house, based on 3 years of MEASURED data.
About 80 to 90% of Vermont houses are worse than my house
Each Vermont house would need at least 2 HPs, each with 2 heads.
Only about 3 to 4% of all Vermont houses are suitable for HPs, to ECONOMICALLY displace 100% of fossil Btus.
WEATHERIZING WOULD NOT MAKE A DAMNED BIT OF DIFFERENCE
EAN claims 230,000 metric ton CO2 reduction by 92,000 heat pumps, per page 34 of URL, or 2.5 metric ton/HP, or 2500 kg/HP, or about 5,500 lb/HP
That is a gross overstatement
Show Vermonters the calculations and assumptions
Each Vermont House would need 2 to 3 heat pumps, with 2 heads each, to displace 100% of fossil Btus with electricity Btus
The installed turnkey cost is about $16000, for 2 HPs with 2 heads each.
Number of houses = 92,000 HPs/2 = 46,000 houses
Total capital cost 16000 x 46000 = $736 million
It will be much more, because of high inflation and the cost of financing
With my 3 heat pumps I ECONOMICALLY displace about 35% of fossil Btus with electricity Btus.
I could run my heat pumps at lower temperatures and displace more fossil Btus, but that would cost more per hour than my efficient propane furnace.
I am a retired energy systems analyst
I made the analysis and calculations
EAN writes glossy reports for consumption by lay people, including almost all Legislators, who likely never analyzed, designed, operated any energy system, and who will act like sheep to vote AYE during roll calls
LABOR SHORTAGE TO INSTALL HEAT PUMPS?
We will train the folks who came from anywhere in the world, walked across in-the-basement, senile Biden’s open border.
They are unvetted, unskilled, inexperienced, incompetent, undocumented, dirt poor, from the bottom of their third world societies.
We will give them health, education, job training, housing, food, clothing benefits from various bleeding-heart government programs,
paid for by already-struggling Vermont taxpayers trying to make ends meet in a near-zero-real-growth Vermont economy, with 10%/y ACTUAL inflation,
plus we will hand about $100 BILLION per year to the most corrupt neo-Nazi nation in Europe, “for as long as it takes”,
plus at least $200 BILLION/y for CLIMATE FIGHTING scams, like S.5, etc.
With about 6 million walk-ins over four Biden years, and we are talking about some real $money that will be impoverishing the already-struggling, hard-working US people
Vermont and the US are rapidly are descending into the Third World dissolution
Basing computations on your experience, the math shows that a workforce of fewer than 5,000 could install 420,000 heat pumps in a year (but without two weeks of vacation). Five thousand jobs for Vermonters is nothing to sneeze at!
However, it would be very wise to have all those homes properly insulated first
This is the thought process of Representative Amy Sheldon as quoted in the Addison Independent :“Putting a price on carbon pollution and directing revenue into diverse, local, clean energy will provide a solid foundation for growing Vermont’s economy,” Sheldon, a Democrat, said. “By taking control of our energy future, we can set an example for the rest of the country, help reduce the effects of climate change, build resilience in our communities and demonstrate that doing the right thing is also good for business.”https://www.addisonindependent.com/2017/12/10/amy-sheldon-honored-with-climate-champion-award/
So here we are more than a decade in the making of fiddling around with absurd energy goals, while China and Russia are making new geopolitical alliances and Western Europe is collapsing, Madam Chair Amy Sheldon believes that Vermont will set an example for the country. Senator Kitchel, at the appropriation committee, expressed clearly that the very thought of S.5 is creating massive anxiety in Vermonters. Are legislators supposed to torture their constituents? Representative Amy Sheldon, it is time to set an example not for the rest of the country, but simply for the sanity, the mental health, the physical well- being and the pocket books of Vermonters and kill that bill. Only a fool would adopt energy policies that are unreliable, undefinable, uncomfortable, and unquantifiable. If you adopt S.5, you are sentencing Vermonters to two years of unnecessary torture.
Stebbins could care less about all the underpaid kids working in the lithium mines in South America to fuel her political ambitions. She could also care less about the real-world impact of the transmission lines and dead-battery storage facilities that will be needed. Even if it were feasible, to begin with.
Three Blind Mice, Three Blind Mice
Oh, but she’s good in committee.
Representative Gabrielle Stebbins, YOU lighten up and recuse yourself so Vermonters can have the hope to be governed in a representative democratic form of government and not under the boot of crony capitalism . You are not in the legislature to promote renewable energy but to assure the most efficient and least costly sources of energy to Vermonters. It is time to stop looking at subsidies as miracles from heaven, subsidies in renewable energy are simply robbing money from the taxpayers to enrich renewable entrepreneurs Your game is over !! You must apologize to Vermont’s Secretary of Natural Resources, Julie Moore. You must educate yourself about the geopolitics of renewable energy and spend some time in the foodbanks of Germany where a new middle class poverty is spreading due to failed renewable energy policies or in the streets of France .You must inform yourself of the vulnerability of the electric grid in times of war as it is lived right now in Ukraine which renders the concept of “all electric policies” an ignominy.
From Stebbins bio at Energy Future group :
“Gabrielle specializes in the development of policy and programs for promotion of renewable energy, strategic electrification and energy efficiency, with a special focus on efforts to integrate all three. She has extensive expertise in policy and planning from current work as a managing consultant at EFG and her past work as director of Vermont’s statewide renewable energy industry trade association, member of the Vermont System Planning Committee (addressing transmission grid reliability planning), the American Public Power Association’s Policy Committee, and as Chair of the Board of the Burlington Electric Department (BED), Vermont’s largest municipal electric utility. In the latter role Gabrielle has provided strategic direction on BED’s IRP, maintaining BED’s 100% renewably-sourced portfolio and on Burlington’s goal to be a net zero city across all energy use by 2030. Gabrielle is also a Vermont State Representative, serving as co-chair of the Vermont Legislative Climate Solutions Caucus and co-chair of the Energy Action Network’s Climate Workforce coalition. Gabrielle brings to her policy and planning work a grounded understanding of what it takes to move markets from policy incubation in the legislative arena, to program design in the regulatory arena, to delivery in the implementation arena, having developed and passed energy legislation and regulation, testified in regulatory proceedings, and having managed energy efficiency and renewable energy incentive programs.”
The glaring ethics violations extend beyond just rep, stebbins. The interwoven relationships between legislators and their spouses, family, friends, and lobbyists. The house and senate leadership would rather we be ignorant of such problems- but they should as a requirement of their alleged leadership positions have dealt with ethics violations already.
It is very likely leadership is being issued orders- and Vermont is the northeast test bed for more totalitarian energy policy. Why not try out punitive policies on a leftist state, with few moderate or conservative voters to fight back? I’d speculate that whomever is pulling balint’s strings in DC is behind this experiment as well. With a left leaning governor- there’s really nothing stopping them.
If you haven’t figured it out by now, VT is run, dominated & controlled by a Cult, and all their $$$$ lobbyists (many are out of state ones)…somehow they think they are going to “save the world”….(exact quote from Sen. MacDonald). Yet VT has only 640,000 people…42% of whom are 19 and under, or over 65? The money just ain’t there to “save the world”…all they will do is create a very severe fiscal crisis within a few years time, as they right now blow several billions of the free covid money, on worthless, Cultish projects. The $4.5 billion unfunded UNION retirement benefits aren’t going away, they only are getting worse by the day…and State of VT has a couple billion debt as well.
If we suffer tamely a lawless attack upon our liberty, we encourage it, and involve others in our doom. — Samuel Adams
Nobel in thought, Jay…but I am afraid it’s too late for VT….it’s been decades in the making – this final takeover & “Dikat” by them…and they won’t stop. This Kilmate Kult of enviro is just the history & the cultishness of Jim Jones repeating….Jim Jones killed all his followers… just like the Klimate Enviro Cult will kill VT….Jone’s followers drank the poisonous “Kool-Aid”…..and the “VT Kilmate Kult” is drinking & forcing the similar poisonous Kool-Aid onto all citizens.
You have only two choices. Stay and suffer – or leave. The rest of the county is still free and wonderful. You are on this earth only once..always remember that.
Representative Gabrielle Stebbins (D-Burlington) has offended 3 V.S.A. § 1203. Conflict of interest; appearance of conflict-of-interest statutes and the Vermont Rules of Professional Conduct and Code of Ethics. She should recuse herself or be removed from office.
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