Senate Sees Renewable Energy as Growth Industry

03/29/02 12:00AM



(Host) The Senate on Thursday afternoon gave its final approval to legislation that is designed to stimulate the state's renewable energy industry. The bill calls on all utilities in Vermont to develop a renewable energy portfolio that will require that a percentage of the utility's overall energy supply is produced from renewable projects.

The bill also expands the policy of net metering. This allows individuals or businesses with renewable energy systems to sell any of their excess power back to their local utility.

Senate Natural Resources Chairman Dick McCormack is convinced that all of the state's growth in electrical demand in the next decade can be met using energy from renewable sources:

(McCormack) "This is us doing our part as part of this nation and it's also good for us. We see that one of the underlying principles of this bill is that we have a real opportunity in Vermont to improve our economy by developing and encouraging the renewable energy as a state industry."

(Host) The legislation also exempts the purchase of renewable energy systems from the state sales tax. The measure now goes to the House for its consideration.
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