Today, Vermont Conservation Voters (VCV), the non-partisan political action arm of Vermont’s environmental community, announced the release of the 2024 Environmental Common AgendaThis document serves as a comprehensive guide outlining this year’s top legislative priorities to address the urgent environmental challenges facing Vermont. This year, 19 organizations signed onto the Agenda. You can watch today’s full press conference announcing the release of this year’s Common Agenda here.

“The climate crisis is literally at our doors in communities across the state,” stated Lauren Hierl, Executive Director of Vermont Conservation Voters. “We are calling on policymakers to take swift action to pass robust legislation to cut climate pollution and make our communities more resilient. Without stronger protections for our river corridors and wetlands, better-planned housing development in our downtowns and village centers, and a commitment to increasing our reliance on clean energy, Vermonters know that the next costly climate event is looming.”

Specifically, we are calling on Vermont lawmakers to:

  • Cut climate pollution and enhance the resilience of our communities:

    • Build climate resilience by better protecting our river corridors, streams and wetlands, and by addressing dam safety.

    • Hold fossil fuel companies accountable for helping pay for the damage their products have caused in Vermont.

    • Update the Renewable Energy Standard to achieve 100% renewable energy and ensure development of significantly more new renewables.

    • Make significant investments in climate resilience, environmental justice, clean transportation, and other critical environmental initiatives.

  • Modernize Act 250 with policies to allow more housing development in compact community centers, paired with better protections for forests and other natural resources.

  • Promote a healthier Vermont:

    • Ban toxic chemicals like PFAS from personal care products, textiles and artificial turf, and pass a pollinator protection bill to ban neonicotinoid-treated seeds.

    • Enact Bottle Bill modernization by overriding the gubernatorial veto.

    • Advance policies that promote a healthy democracy.

“With a record 19 partner organizations signing on to our annual environmental agenda, it’s clear the call for action is momentous,” added Justin Marsh, Political Director of Vermont Conservation Voters. “Just last year we saw multiple flooding events that destroyed infrastructure and polluted our waterways and lakes, poor air quality brought on by wildfires across the continent, and the warmest year on record. This should be the wake-up call we need to rally behind advancing legislation that curbs the rapid speed and impacts of this compounding crisis.”

Lawmakers are already taking up legislation to advance these priorities, and the environmental community will be weighing in to support strong and essential climate action in 2024.

The Environmental Common Agenda is a project of Vermont Conservation Voters, with participation from the following partner organizations: Audubon Vermont, Connecticut River Conservancy (CRC), Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), Lake Champlain Committee (LCC), Preservation Trust of Vermont, Renewable Energy Vermont (REV), Rights & Democracy (RAD), Slingshot, Third Act Vermont, 350VT, The Trust for Public Land (TPL), Vermont Businesses for Social Responsibility (VBSR), The Vermont Climate & Health Alliance, Vermont Chapter of the Sierra Club, Vermont Conservation Voters (VCV), Vermont Council of Trout Unlimited, Vermont Interfaith Power & Light (VTIPL), Vermont Natural Resources Council (VNRC), Vermont Public Interest Research Group (VPIRG)