Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Renewable Energy News for June 28, 2007

  • Senate Begins Work on Carbon Cap and Trade Program: Senator Joesph Lieberman (I-CT) and Senator John Warner (R-VA) announced yesterday that they plan to collaborate on federal climate change legislation to be introduced in the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee later this fall. According to the press release from Senator Lieberman's office, the proposed legislation will focus on establishing an "economy-wide" national cap-and-trade system. Gristmill has a run-down on this and other energy related legislative activity in D.C. yesterday.
  • Vermont Legislators Offer Compromise on Climate Change & Energy Efficiency Legislation, Governor Immediately Rejects Offer: Leaders of the Vermont House and Senate offered to remove a tax on the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant from the legislature's climate change bill yesterday in an effort to reach a compromise with Governor Jim Douglas (R) on the legislation. Governor Douglas vetoed the bill two weeks ago, citing the Yankee tax provision as his primary concern with the legislature's proposal. But the Governor immediately rejected the compromise legislation even without the tax, citing concerns over the "all-fuels" energy efficiency program included in the bill. The all-fuels efficiency program, which is modeled on the State's nationally-recognized Efficiency Vermont program, would be one of the nation's first energy programs to address heating fuel efficiency. The State of Connecticut recently passed legislation which establishes a similar program. Governor Douglas is still pushing his own last-minute energy efficiency plan, which would require homeowners to take out loans to pay for efficiency improvements. Under that program the state would pay banks to reduce the interest rates charged on loans for energy efficiency improvements. Leaders of the House and Senate were scheduled to meet with Governor Douglas today to discuss a compromise, but the Governor canceled the meeting last night. Legislators will return to Montpelier on July 11 to attempt to override the Governor's veto.

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