Clean Energy & Climate Action
As Vermont confronts the escalating impacts of the climate crisis, we must expedite implementation of the strategies outlined in the state’s Climate Action Plan. In addition to climate resilience initiatives, we must also maintain our focus on cutting climate pollution and helping all Vermonters access clean energy solutions.
We must transition swiftly to a cleaner electric portfolio with significantly more new in-state and regional renewable energy. We must continue to explore clean energy sources such as geothermal energy. We should divest state pension funds from fossil fuels to both reduce investments in the fossil fuel industry and help ensure healthy state pension funds. Further, we need to continue to invest in clean transportation solutions such as electric vehicles, transit and micro-transit, and bike and pedestrian infrastructure. The Legislature should also explore pathways for Vermont to participate in cap-and-invest or similar regulatory programs to cut the largest source of climate pollution in Vermont and build a statewide transportation system that is more cost-effective, multi-modal and accessible to all Vermonters.
We must simultaneously work to address the disproportionate energy burden faced by many Vermonters. Lower-income and historically overburdened communities bear the brunt of high energy costs, including the expensive reliance on fossil fuels. The state must take active steps to make sure the most vulnerable Vermonters can participate in the transition to cleaner and more affordable options as we work to meet the legal targets of the Global Warming Solutions Act, including examining ratepayer protection strategies. And, importantly, this work must include increased investment in the state’s Environmental Justice program to ensure its principles and policies underpin the work of state agencies.
2024 Legislative Priorities
Cleaner Electricity by updating the Renewable Energy Standard to require 100% total renewable energy by 2030 and far more new, renewable energy generation in Vermont and in our region that is well-sited and prioritizes lower-income, historically overburdened Vermonters in accessing that clean energy.
Invest in critical environmental initiatives, including cleaner transportation solutions, such as more efficient and electric vehicles, and other needed transit, micro-transit, and bike and pedestrian infrastructure; work to identify more sustainable long-term funding sources to support a modern and equitable multi-modal transportation system; and invest in the Environmental Justice (EJ) program, including providing higher per diems for participants serving on government boards and commissions, such as the EJ Advisory Council.
Energy and Climate Program Director
Vermont Natural Resources Council
Johanna Miller is the Energy & Climate Program Director for the Vermont Natural Resources Council (VNRC). Johanna also serves as the coordinator of the Vermont Energy and Climate Action Network (VECAN), the statewide network of 120+ town energy committees and the partners who support them. In these roles, Johanna works from the grassroots to the Legislature to help advance clean energy and climate action programs and policies. In 2020, Johanna was appointed to the 23-member Vermont Climate Council, which is charged with crafting a plan to meet the climate mitigation, adaptation and resilience requirements of the Global Warming Solutions Act.
Before that, in 2017, Johanna was appointed as a member of Governor Phil Scott’s Climate Action Commission, and she also serves on the board of the Clean Energy Development Fund, the Vermont Energy Education Program board, and the Vermont System Planning Committee. Prior to joining VNRC in 2005, Johanna spent five years working as an organizer and policy expert for a statewide environmental policy and advocacy organization in Michigan. Johanna is a graduate of the University of Vermont and lives with her family in Montpelier.