Vermont’s byzantine regulatory process has stopped another business development from getting off the ground. This time it a non-polluting, renewable energy resource was the victim. — The Vermont based East Haven Wind Project.
I listened to a spokesperson from Renewable Energy Vermont on the Mark Johnson’s WDEV radio show yesterday discuss how Vermont’s regulatory process is essentially broken.
He explained how wind projects are more likely to go to New York or the western states because the permit process is straightforward and timely. What would take a maximum of three or six months in other states can take well over three years in Vermont, and the applicant never really know how long it will take.
“Kurt Janson wrote in his proposal for decision that while beneficial, the project was in the wrong place. East Mountain sits near thousands of acres of the Champion Lands which have been conserved for public use. Janson also cited the fact that the wind developer had not done bat and bird studies.” (Caledonian-Record)
According to the radio guest, the wind project did do some bird and bat studies, but with instances of birds and bats dying is less than 2 per year in all the studies done in other states they didn’t have the financial resources to complete the study to the degree that the Agency of Natural Resources wanted, which was some advanced radar studies, which only large energy companies can possibly afford.
The PBS decision is telling anyone who wants to do small scale wind projects in Vermont to no waste your time trying. The East Haven Wind Project spent over one million dollars over three years just to have their permit rejected.
If you want clean renewal energy, and a stronger economy that can compete with other states, then let me point you to part of our platform on the Economy:
“1. ECONOMY: We believe in competitive free enterprise as the source of wealth for our people, jobs for our labor force, and the tax base necessary to support the legitimate demands of government. Confusing regulations and prolonged and often arbitrary enforcement has weakened the economic competitiveness of Vermont businesses. We will identify regulations that are outdated and unnecessary, and secure their repeal. We will identify regulations that ought to be rewritten, and we will rewrite them so they are strict in protecting consumers, business, our communities, and our environment, but certain in their requirements, reasonable in their demands, and swift and fair in their application.”