VNRC, Diverse Coalition Push Energy Efficiency Expansion

VNRC, Diverse Coalition Push Energy Efficiency Expansion

February 22, 2007

VNRC is part of a newly established ‘Building Efficiency Coalition,’ representing businesses, low-income groups, environmental organizations and individuals. Yesterday the coalition came together at the Vermont State House to introduce and call for passage of S.94 — a bill that would help more Vermonters maximize efficiency in heating their homes and businesses. “S.94 builds on the excellent track record of Efficiency Vermont and takes efficiency and conservation to another level, offering Vermonters the opportunity to save money while at the same time reducing their carbon footprint,” said VNRC’s Executive Director Elizabeth Courtney. Read S.94 here.

The Vermont Natural Resources Council is one of about 20 groups in the BEC who are supporting this important bill. Help us turn this bill into law. Call your senators today and voice your support for S.94. Click here to find your legislators contact information. Contact Governor Jim Douglas as well. Let him know you support S.94. Email Governor Douglas here or call his office at 802-828-3333.

Sponsored by Senators Ginny Lyons, Ann Cummings, and Senate President Pro-Tem Peter Shumlin, the bill would essentially expand the mandate of Vermont’s award-winning energy efficiency utility — Efficiency Vermont — to focus beyond electricity to energy savings from heating. This bill would help capture the significant energy loss from homes and businesses in Vermont with outdated or inefficient weatherization.

The coalition of groups working to advance this bill represent a broad spectrum of constituencies who would benefit from its passage. Low-income leaders, economic development experts, green business entrepreneurs, and environmental advocates are coordinating their efforts around S.94. BEC members view S.94 as a great opportunity to grow good Vermont jobs, save energy, and reduce the state’s greenhouse gas emissions which contribute to global warming.

The Vermont Department of Public Service recently released a study which outlined potential savings of $486 million over 10 years by addressing inefficiencies in the way Vermont heats its homes and businesses. The cost savings of energy efficiency are increasingly clear. S.94 will capitalize on that opportunity by helping Vermonters lower their heating fuel bills. It would also create new jobs, increase the comfort of our homes, and take the state one vital step further in its efforts to seriously tackle global warming.

BEC members support S.94 as it addresses the goals in their joint statement of purpose to:

  • Create a Building Efficiency system that provides “one-stop-point-of-entry” for residential, commercial and industrial Vermont buildings so owners and builders will have access to all efficiency and renewable energy resources when designing new and retrofitting existing buildings.
  • Harness the inventiveness and skill of Vermont businesses to create new jobs and continuous improvement in the affordability, sustainability and efficiency of Vermont’s buildings.
  • Lead the way in effective greenhouse gas reduction, while lowering energy costs and strengthening our economy.

Help us make this bill a reality. Call or write your legislators today and tell them you support S.94 as a great way to create good Vermont jobs, save energy and curb our greenhouse gas emissions.