Welcome back to the Climate Dispatch! This week, the Governor presented his budget and legislators started moving their first bills out of committee.

While the Governor didn’t spend much time focusing on flood recovery or climate action in his remarks, fortunately the Legislature is making important progress on modernizing the Renewable Energy Standard, making plans to hold Big Oil accountable for the damages their products have caused and building climate resilience in the state.

On today’s Climate Dispatch, we talk with Senator Becca White, co-chair of the Climate Solutions Caucus, who shares an update on the Caucus’ 2024 platform and climate resilience bill S.213.  

Today’s Episode

The House Environment and Energy Committee continued to take testimony on H.289, the Renewable Energy Standard bill.  The committee was able to start this session with a strong package of policy proposals to work through, thanks to extensive work done by the legislatively-created stakeholder group this fall. We’re excited to report that a committee vote is likely next week, and the bill will then head to the House floor. Check out our priorities for a modernized Vermont Renewable Energy Standard.

Both the Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee and House Environment and Energy Committee have started conversations on how Vermont can become more resilient in the wake of the devastating floods of 2023. In the Senate, they’ve started with S.213, an act relating to the regulation of wetlands, river corridor development, and dam safety, and in the House they’ve begun discussion of H.687, an act relating to community resilience and biodiversity protection through land use. Check out our priorities for climate resilience.

Call to Action

Modernizing the Renewable Energy Standard can and should be done this year, but we need to make sure that all members of the House know that it’s a priority. Please take a moment to contact your Representative(s) to urge them to support modernizing the Renewable Energy Standard so that Vermont can have 100% clean energy and generate more in-state and regional renewable energy!