Articles from Vermont

Rigging the system

These powerful lawyers may have overplayed their hand. It has already caused embarrassment for them, as well as their firms, which in some cases are large, established and well-respected practices. Additionally, it could be a crushing blow to the future siting of wind and solar projects. 
7 Feb 2016

Energy siting discussion reveals Vermont’s portfolio standards as culprit

“The  results show that we would need 42 new megawatts of wind, 10 new megawatts of hydro and 174 megawatts of solar,” she said. “When we first saw those numbers it took our breath away quite literally because the numbers seem so huge.” ...The state, in her view, does have the property available for such projects without encroaching on sensitive residential areas or environmental habitats.
4 Feb 2016

Dr. Sandy Reider to speak on wind turbines and health effects

“To the benefit of the wind industry, and apparently to those agencies promoting large wind installations on our ridgelines here in Vermont, the issue of infrasound has thus far been successfully suppressed and ignored.” His talk will point out that methodological shortcomings plague many of the large-scale industry or government-sponsored studies that state agencies rely upon to establish protective sound levels.
1 Feb 2016

In Vermont, thorn in side of powerful faces criminal probe

Annette Smith has been fighting the power for more than 15 years, tenaciously opposing energy projects she believes harm the environment or quality of life in Vermont. Now she is the target of a criminal investigation ...her only offense is too often annoying a green power industry that boasts deep pockets. "Even though this is a preposterous charge, and will likely be thrown out, its purpose will be fulfilled: to chill anyone's free speech rights who dares to question the powerful in Montpelier," attorney Deborah Bucknam wrote in an op-ed.
31 Jan 2016

Bucknam: Selective prosecution

The attorney general is siding with Vermont’s large law firms and big lobbyists to deprive opponents of industrial wind the advice of a person who knows the intricacies of the proceedings and can help those who cannot afford the high-priced lawyers the developers can. And make no mistake. Even though this is a preposterous charge and will likely be thrown out, its purpose will be fulfilled: to chill anyone’s free speech rights who dares to question the powerful in Montpelier.
28 Jan 2016

Who is trying to silence Smith?

I recently read that the Vermont attorney general’s office is investigating Annette Smith of Vermonters for a Clean Environment. The purpose of the investigation is supposedly for “possible unauthorized practice of law.”
28 Jan 2016

Ignoring harm of noise

Taken together with the thousands of case reports from around the world (I personally have seen three families here in the Northeast Kingdom that have been forced to abandon their homes due to adverse health effects from nearby wind turbines), stricter full-spectrum noise standards for these large wind projects are urgently needed.
24 Jan 2016

State investigating head of VCE

The head of Vermonters for a Clean Environment, Annette Smith, is under criminal investigation by the Vermont attorney general’s office for the possible unauthorized practice of law. “I can confirm that a criminal investigation is underway,” Assistant Attorney General John Treadwell said in an interview Friday afternoon. “I cannot comment further at this time.”
23 Jan 2016

Energy Critics Make Strongest Statehouse Push

Wednesday brought the biggest show of force yet by Vermonters upset with the state’s siting process for energy projects. What has in recent years been a relatively small group of wind opponents has grown into a legion of people worried about wind and solar, including town leaders from across the state.
21 Jan 2016

Vermont’s energy siting struggle hits crescendo

On Wednesday, more than 100 protesters gathered at the Statehouse to demand local control for energy siting. Leading the demonstration were state Sen. John Rodgers, D-Essex/Orleans; Karen Horn, policy director for the Vermont League of Cities and Towns; and Don Chioffi, a member of the Rutland Selectboard. Together they argued the energy project siting process as it stands now oversteps the will of ratepayers.
21 Jan 2016

Lawmakers want to ban industrial wind energy

The bills would ban any wind energy project with a capacity of 500 kilowatts or more -- like existing projects in Sheffield and Georgia Mountain -- though small individual turbines would still be allowed. Strong and Rodgers cited the impact on the environment as well as the preservation of Vermont’s scenic resources as their motivations for pushing for an industrial wind ban
21 Jan 2016
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