Vermont Climate Council launches public events to gather feedback and ideas for statewide Climate Action Plan

MONTPELIER, Vt. — From hotter days to more frequent and intense storms, Vermont’s climate patterns are clearly shifting and impacting our state. This fall, state officials, local leaders and members of the Vermont Climate Council invite the public to attend one of several events to learn about the development of the state’s Climate Action Plan and help prioritize approaches.

“Join us at an upcoming meeting to discuss how climate change is affecting you and your community and offer feedback on proposed strategies for the Climate Action Plan,” said Agency of Natural Resources Secretary Julie Moore. “Your perspective matters. The Climate Action Plan will serve as the State’s roadmap for lessening the impacts of climate change, and the ideas and feedback you share with us will inform the Action Plan.”

In 2020, the Vermont Legislature passed the Global Warming Solutions Act. The Act requires Vermonters to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and helps communities prepare to face more extreme weather caused by climate change. The Act also directed the Vermont Climate Council to develop a Climate Action Plan to guide this work. The Action Plan aims to dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions over the next several decades, prepare and protect Vermont communities and landscapes from the greatest risks of climate change and create new jobs to enable this transformation. The initial plan will be adopted on December 1, 2021.

While climate change affects everyone, some people face greater risks due to where they live, their race, ethnicity, income, disability, health, age and/or occupation. Advancing solutions that address the needs of Vermonters facing the greatest risk is a key aspect of the plan.

There are multiple opportunities to join an upcoming event, either online or in person. All events are free and open to everyone interested in attending. Food will be provided at each in-person events. Please note that in-person events are being held in outdoor pavilions or shelters and will observe COVID-19 safety protocols; all attendees are asked to wear masks.

  • Tuesday, September 21, 5:00-7:00pm: Elmore State Park Pavilion | 856 VT-12, Elmore, VT
  • Wednesday, September 22, 5:00-7:00pm: Emerald Lake State Park Pavilion | 65 Emerald Lake Ln, East Dorset, VT
  • Thursday, September 23, 5:00-7:00pm: Lakeside Park Pavilion | 32 Mill St, Island Pond, VT
  • Sunday, September 26, 3:00-5:00pm: Airport Park Pavilion | 500 Colchester Point Rd, Colchester, VT
  • Thursday, September 30, 6:00-7:30pm: Virtual event via Zoom
  • Tuesday, October 5, 6:00-7:30pm: Virtual event via Zoom for BIPOC communities
  • Wednesday, October 6, 6:00-7:30pm: Virtual event via Zoom

For more information about the Climate Action Plan, please visit https://climatechange.vermont.gov/. Event details can be found at https://climatechange.vermont.gov/getinvolved.

Media Contact:
Elle O’Casey, Director of Communications
Vermont Agency of Natural Resources
Elle.ocasey@vermont.gov, 802-760-9967

Image courtesy of Public domain

13 thoughts on “Vermont Climate Council launches public events to gather feedback and ideas for statewide Climate Action Plan

  1. POOR ECONOMICS AND MINIMAL CO2 REDUCTION OF ELECTRIC VEHICLES IN NEW ENGLAND
    https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/poor-economics-of-electric-vehicles-in-new-england

    RE folks would have everyone driving UNAFFORDABLE EVS, that would reduce very little CO2 compared with EFFICIENT gasoline vehicles., on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis.

    EVs do not have a tail pipe, but they sure as hell “emit” CO2.

    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

    If LDV average would become 40 mpg (by means of carrots and sticks), CO2 would become about 22.7/40 x 56.315 = 32 Mt over 10y, which is not that much more than the 26,490 Mt of a Prius L Eco.
    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.

    “Going EV” to obtain a few more Mt/vehicle would require huge capital investments having a very high cost of CO2 reduction per metric ton.

    RE folks claiming EVs have no CO2 emissions is utter nonsense.

    “Break their will” RE folks want to “Electrify Everything”, but that is an easily uttered slogan
    It would require:

    – Additional electricity generation plants, such as nuclear, wind, solar, and hydro
    – Additional grid augmentation/expansion to carry increased loads for future EVs and heat pumps
    – Additional battery systems to store the midday solar electricity surges for later use, aka, DUCK-curve management.
    – Major command/control-orchestrating to avoid overloading distribution and high voltage electric grids regarding:

    1) Charging times and duration of EVs and heat pumps
    2) Operating times of major appliances
    3) Control of electricity demands of commercial/industrial businesses

  2. UNDERSTATING CO2 EMISSIONS PER KILOWATT-HOUR TO HYPE EVs AND HEAT PUMPS
    https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/some-ne-state-governments-play-deceptive-games-with-co2-emissions

    EXCERPT

    THETFORD; July 2, 2021 — A fire destroyed a 2019 Chevy Bolt, 66 kWh battery, EPA range 238 miles, owned by state Rep. Tim Briglin, D-Thetford, Chairman of the House Committee on Energy and Technology.

    He had been driving back and forth from Thetford, VT, to Montpelier, VT, with his EV, about 100 miles via I-89
    He had parked his 2019 Chevy Bolt on the driveway, throughout the winter, per GM recall of Chevy Bolts
    He had plugged his EV into a 240-volt charger.
    The battery was at about 10% charge at start of charging, at 8 PM, and he had charged it to 100% charge at 4 AM; 8 hours of charging. See Note

    Li-ions (pos.) would plate out on the cathode (neg) each time when charging from 80 to 100%.
    Li-ions would plate out on the anode (pos) each time when charging from 10% to 20%, especially when such charging occurred at battery temperatures of 32F or less.

    EV Fire on Driveway:

    Firefighters were called to Briglin’s Tucker Hill Road home around 9 AM Thursday.
    Investigators from the Vermont Department of Public Safety Fire and Explosion Investigation Unit determined:

    1) The fire started in a compartment in the back of the passenger’s side of the vehicle
    2) It was likely due to an “electrical failure”.

    GM Recall of Chevy Bolts:

    In 2020, GM issued a worldwide recall of 68,667 Chevy Bolts, all 2017, 2018 and 2019 models, plus, in 2021, a recall for another 73,000 Bolts, all 2020, 2021, and 2022 models.
    GM set aside $1.8 BILLION to replace battery modules, or 1.8 BILLION/(68,667 + 73,000) = $12,706/EV.

    Owners were advised not to charge them in a garage, and not to leave them unattended while charging, which may take up to 8 hours; what a nuisance!
    Rep. Briglin heeded the GM recall by not charging in his garage.

    NOTE:
    – Cost of replacing the battery packs of 80,000 Hyundai Konas was estimated at $900 million, about $11,000 per vehicle
    – EV batteries should be charged from 20 to 80%, to achieve minimal degradation and long life, plus the charging loss is minimal in that range
    – Charging EVs from 0 to 20% charge, and from 80 to 100% charge, 1) uses more kWh AC from the wall outlet per kWh DC charged into the battery, and 2) is detrimental to the battery. Also, it requires additional kWh for cooling the battery while charging.
    – EV batteries must never be charged, when the battery temperature is less than 32F; if charged anyway, the plating out of Li-ions on the anode would permanently damage the battery.

    See section Charging Electric Vehicles During Freezing Conditions in URL

  3. WIND AND SOLAR TO PROVIDE 50 PERCENT OF FUTURE NEW ENGLAND ELECTRICITY CONSUMPTION
    https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/wind-and-solar-provide-50-percent-of-future-new-england

    EXCERPT

    Heat Pumps are Money Losers in my Vermont House (as they are in almost all people’s houses)

    I installed three Mitsubishi, 24,000 Btu/h HPs, Model MXZ-2C24NAHZ2, each with 2 heads; 2 in the living room, 1 in the kitchen, and 1 in each of 3 bedrooms. The HPs have DC variable-speed, motor-driven compressors and fans, which improves the efficiency of low-temperature operation.
    The HPs last about 15 years. Turnkey capital cost was $24,000

    Well-Sealed, Well-Insulated House: The HPs are used for heating and cooling my 35-y-old, 3500 sq ft, well-sealed/well-insulated house, except the basement, which has a near-steady temperature throughout the year, because it has 2” of blueboard, R-10, on the outside of the concrete foundation and under the basement slab, which has saved me many thousands of space heating dollars over the 35 years.

    I do not operate my HPs at 10F or below, because HPs would become increasingly less efficient with decreasing temperatures. The HP operating cost per hour would become greater than of my highly efficient propane furnace.

    High Electricity Prices: Vermont forcing, with subsidies and/or GWSA mandates, the build-outs of expensive RE electricity systems, such as wind, solar, batteries, etc., would be counter-productive, because it would: 1) increase electric rates and 2) worsen the already poor economics of HPs (and of EVs)!!

    Energy Reduction and Cost of Energy Reduction

    Before HPs: I used 100 gal for domestic hot water + 250 gal for 2 stoves in basement + 850 gal for Viessmann furnace, for a total propane of 1,200 gal/y

    After HPs: I used 100 gal for domestic hot water + 250 gal for 2 stoves in basement + 550 gal for Viessmann furnace + 2,244 kWh of electricity.

    My propane cost reduction for space heating was 850 – 550 = 300 gallon/y, at a cost of 2.339/gal = $702/y
    My displaced fuel was 100 x (1 – 550/850) = 35%, which is better than the Vermont average of 27.6%
    My electricity cost increase was 2244 kWh x 20 c/kWh = $449/y
    My net cost savings due to the HPs were $253/y, on an investment of $24,000!!

    Amortizing Heat Pumps: Amortizing the $24,000 turnkey capital cost at 3.5%/y for 15 years costs about $2,059/y.
    This is in addition to the amortizing of my existing propane system. I am losing money.

    Other Annual Costs: There likely would be service calls and parts for the HP system, as the years go by.
    This is in addition to the annual service calls and parts for my existing propane system. I am losing more money.

    CO2 Reduction and Cost of CO2 Reduction

    CO2 reduction of the displaced propane would be 300 gal/y x 12.7 lb CO2/gal = 1.728 Mt/y, and the CO2 of the increased electricity would be 2244 x 317 g/kWh = 0.711 Mt/y, for a net reduction of 1.728 – 0.711 = 1.017 Mt/y, if based on the realistic ISO-NE value of 317 g/kWh

    Cost of CO2 Reduction would be (2,059, amortize – 253, energy cost saving + 200, parts and maintenance)/1.017 Mt/y, net CO2 reduction = $1973/Mt, which is similar to money-losing, very expensive, electric school buses. See URL

    Highly Sealed, Highly Insulated Housing

    If I had a highly sealed, highly insulated house, with the same efficient propane heating system, my house, for starters, would use very little energy for space heating, i.e., not much additional energy cost saving and CO2 reduction would be possible using HPs

    If I would install HPs, and would operate the propane system down to 5F (which would involve greater defrost losses), I likely would displace a greater percentage of propane, and might have greater annual energy cost savings; much would depend on: 1) the total energy consumption (which is very little, because of my higher-efficiency house), and 2) the prices of electricity and propane. See Note.

    I likely would need 3 units at 18,000 Btu/h, at a lesser turnkey capital cost. Their output, very-inefficiently produced (low COP), would be about 34,000 Btu/h at -10F, the Vermont HVAC design temperature.

    However, any annual energy cost savings would be overwhelmed by the annual amortizing cost, and parts and service costs. i.e., I would still be losing money, if amortizing were considered.

    NOTE:

    1) About 1.0 to 1.5 percent of Vermont houses are highly sealed and highly insulated
    2) Vermont’s weatherizing program, at about $10,000/unit, does next to nothing for making energy-hog houses suitable for HPs; it is a social program for poorer people.

    Heat Pump Evaluation in Vermont

    VT-Department of Public Service found, after a survey of 77 HPs installed in Vermont houses:

    – The annual energy cost savings were, on average, $200, but the maintenance and annual amortizing costs would turn that gain into a loss of at least $200.

    – On average, the HPs provided 27.6% of the annual space heat, and traditional fuels provided 72.4%. These numbers are directly from the survey data.

    – Owners started to turn off their HPs at about 24F, and very few owners were using their HPs at 10F and below, as shown by the decreasing kWh consumption totals on figure 14 of URL

    – On average, an HP consumed 2,085 kWh during the heating season, of which for:

    1) Operation of outdoor unit (compressor, outdoor fan, controls) + indoor air handling unit (fan and supplemental electric heater, if used) to provide space heat 1,880 kWh;
    2) Operation in standby mode 76 kWh, or 100 x 76/2085 = 3.6%;
    3) Operation in defrost mode 129 kWh, or 100 x 129/2085 = 6.2%. Defrost starts at about 37F and ends at about 10F.

    – Turnkey cost for a one-head HP system is about $4,500; almost all houses had just one HP. See URLs.

    On average, these houses were unsuitable for HPs, and the owners were losing money.

    NOTE: Coefficient of Performance, COP = heat delivered to house/electrical energy to HP

    Heat Pump Evaluation in Minnesota

    The image on page 10 of URL shows:

    1) Increasing coefficients of performance, COP, of an HP, versus increasing outdoor temperatures (blue)
    2) The defrost range from 37F down to 10F (yellow)
    3) Operation of the propane back-up system from 20F to -20F (green).

    Such operation would be least costly and would displace propane, that otherwise would be used.
    The image shows, HPs are economical down to about 13F, then propane, etc., becomes more economical; much depends on the prices of electricity and propane.

    BTW, all of the above has been known for many years, and yet, RE folks, in and out of government, keep on hyping air source HPs in cold climates.

    Ground Source HPs

    They are widely used in many different buildings in northern Europe, such as Germany, the Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and Finland.

    Their main advantage is the coefficient of performance, COP, does not decrease with temperature, because the ground temperature is constant
    GSHPs can economically displace 100% of fuel.
    ASHPs can economically displace at most 50% of fuel; the percentage depends on how well a building is sealed and insulated.

    The main disadvantage of GSHPs is greater turnkey capital cost, i.e., high amortization cost. See URL

  4. ELECTRIC TRANSIT AND SCHOOL BUS SYSTEMS REDUCE LITTLE CO2, ARE NOT COST-EFFECTIVE
    https://www.windtaskforce.org/profiles/blogs/electric-bus-systems-likely-not-cost-effective-in-vermont-at

    EXCERPT

    RE folks want to “Electrify Everything”; an easily uttered slogan

    It would require:

    – Additional power plants, such as nuclear, wind, solar, hydro, bio
    – Additional grid augmentation/expansion to connect wind and solar systems, and to carry the loads for EVs and heat pumps
    – Additional battery systems to store midday solar output surges for later use, i.e., DUCK-curve management.
    – Additional centralized, command/control/orchestrating (turning off/on appliances, heat pumps, EVs, etc.) by utilities to avoid overloading distribution and high voltage electric grids regarding:

    1) Charging times of EVs and operating times of heat pumps, and major appliances
    2) Demands of commercial/industrial businesses

    RE Folks Want More EVs and Buses Bought With “Free” Money

    RE folks drive the energy priorities of New England governments. RE folks want to use about $40 million of “free” federal COVID money and Volkswagen Settlement money to buy electric transit and school buses to deal with a minor pollution problem in a few urban areas in Vermont. RE folks urge Vermonters to buy:

    Mass Transit Buses
    Electric: $750,000 – $1,000,000 each, plus infrastructures, such as indoor parking, high-speed charging systems.
    Standard Diesel: $380,000 – $420,000; indoor parking and charging systems not required.

    School Buses
    Electric: $330,000 – $375,000, plus infrastructures
    Standard Diesel: about $100,000

    This article shows the 2 Proterra transit buses in Burlington, VT, would reduce CO2 at very high cost per metric ton, and the minor annual operating cost reduction would be overwhelmed by the cost of amortizing $million buses that last about 12 to 15 years.

    The $40 million of “free” money would be far better used to build zero-energy, and energy-surplus houses for suffering households; such housing would last at least 50 to 75 years.

    NOTE: Spending huge amounts of borrowed capital on various projects that 1) have very poor financials, and 2) yield minor reductions in CO2 at high cost, is a recipe for 1) low economic efficiency, and 2) low economic growth, on a state-wide and nation-wide scale, which would 1) adversely affect Vermont and US competitiveness in markets, and 2) adversely affect living standards and 3) inhibit unsubsidized/efficient/profitable job creation.

    Real Costs of Government RE Programs Likely Will Remain Hidden

    Vermont’s government engaging in electric bus demonstration programs, financed with “free” money, likely will prove to be expensive undertakings, requiring hidden subsidies, white-washing and obfuscation.

    Lifetime spreadsheets, with 1) turnkey capital costs, 2) annual cashflows, 3) annual energy cost savings, 4) annual CO2 reductions, and 5) cost of CO2 reduction/metric ton, with all assumptions clearly stated and explained, likely will never see the light of day.

    Including Amortizing Capital Cost for a Rational Approach to Projects

    RE folks do not want to include amortizing costs, because it makes the financial economics of their dubious RE projects appear dismal. This is certainly the case with expensive electric buses. If any private-enterprise business were to ignore amortizing costs, it would be out of business in a short time.

    Capital cost of electric school bus, plus charger, $327,500 + $25,000 = $352,500
    Battery system cost, $100,000, for a 100-mile range.
    Capital cost of diesel school bus, $100,000
    Additional capital cost “to go electric” 352500 – 100000 = $252,500

    Lifetime, A-to-Z Analysis Includes Combustion, Upstream, Embodied and Downstream CO2

    Most CO2 analyses, on an energy use basis, significantly understate CO2 emissions. Much more realistic CO2 analyses would be on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis. Such analyses have been performed for at least 75 years in business. Engineering colleges have standard project economics courses in their curricula. Lifetime, A-to-Z analyses regarding energy projects would include:

    1) Upstream CO2 of energy for extraction, processing and transport to a user
    2) Embodied CO2 of expensive batteries, from extraction of materials to installation in a bus
    3) Embodied CO2 of $352,500 electric buses vs $100,000 diesel buses
    4) Embodied CO2 of balance-of-system components
    5) Embodied CO2 of much more expensive electric bus parking facilities, with a Level 2 or high-speed charger for each bus, than for a diesel bus parking facility with a diesel pump.
    6) Downstream CO2 of disposal of batteries, etc.

    Any CO2 advantage of electric buses vs diesel buses would be less, on a lifetime, A-to-Z basis. The cost of CO2 reduction of electric buses would increase from about $1,700/metric ton (energy only basis) to about $2,000/Mt (lifetime, A-to-Z basis).

    Vehicle-to-Grid Operation, VtG

    Proponents of VtG claim electric school buses could be used by utilities, to have the batteries absorb a fraction of midday solar bulges, and deliver that electricity, minus about 20% losses, to the gid during late afternoon/early evening, when peak demands are occurring, and solar has gone to sleep until mid-morning the next day.

    As part of managing midday-solar DUCK curves, 10 electric school buses, capital cost at least $3.5 million, already partially charged, would absorb 500 kWh during midday and discharge 400 kWh from 5 pm to 8 pm (peak demand hours).

    The $100,000 batteries, part of a $325,000 electric school bus, would have extra wear and tear, which would shorten their 15-year lives. This is like doing yardwork in a tuxedo.

    A utility could purchase a 600-kWh battery system, for a turnkey cost of about $450,000, and achieve the same results.

  5. How much does it cost to replace an EV battery? Where do the resources come from to build EVs? How many solar panels does it take to manufacturer all the components of an EV or anything else? Where do the resources come from the make a solar panels? Perhaps the Climate Clowns on this panel have one job and one job only – support and benefit China while destroying the USA.

  6. Wake up Vermonters! Your state is being run and controlled by these unelected boards and commissions. Like your gas Viking and Wolf ranges? Kiss them good bye. Also your nice, clean natural gas heating system… so long. Their goal is to eliminate any use of fossil fuels wether you like it or not. l

  7. How did we get to a race-based democratic citizen input process??? BIPOC Only Zoom sessions on public process??? Call it what it is: RACISM.

    Look for Anti-Non-Vaxedism during the coming session… Process should always be open to All. THAT IS WHEN OUR NATION OVERCOMES RACISM AND MOB RULE.

  8. Just go back 100 years and look at the weather events, major ones.

    The “experts” in this business that are constantly spewing garbage to attempt to “educate” the masses do not want to hear about history. Well la te da!!!
    Ask Alan Betts about the 38 or 53 hurricanes! He told me, “well I was not around here then”.
    Betts supposedly has a Dr degree in climate science, his blather appears in a regional paper about once a month. Lately he has spent a lot of time bashing Trump.

  9. Since prehistory rulers have been trying to alter the weather, often by making sacrifices of the people over whom they rule. There is no compelling evidence it has ever worked – or that it will work now. Things don’t change much in that respect. I vaguely recall Ming the Merciless commenting wisely that mere humans should not meddle in things they do not fully understand. Remember the impending ice age in the seventies? That didn’t happen, so…

  10. I have been to these type of feel good, all is well, do not worry, dog and pony shows.

    They are totally useless, because RE bureaucrats keep hidden the most important information.

    Release the spreadsheets of RE projects, which MUST exist, immediately, instead of keeping us in the dark.

    Do not hide behind the facetious privacy excuse.

    These projects are subsidized with OUR money.

    We deserve to have all the details, so we can do our own analyses, BEFORE we are GWSA-MANDATED to spend big money on a lot of stupidities, that will impoverish all of us.

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