Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Vermont Environmental News, August 31, 2010

Sheffield wind project granted final permit | The Burlington Free Press
A Vermont Environmental Court judge has ruled that a 16-turbine wind-energy project is entitled to the final permits it needs to begin construction on Granby Mountain and Libby Hill in Sheffield. Judge Merideth Wright ordered several revisions in the construction stormwater permits issued to Vermont Wind, a subsidiary of Boston-based First Wind, but upheld those permits. Vermont Wind would be only the second such project to be constructed in Vermont. A commercial wind farm in Searsburg, in southern Vermont, was completed in 1997. If the company follows the permit conditions, there is no reason to expect that road-building and installation of the towers would degrade five small streams on the ridge, Wright concluded. (Disclosure: SDRS Represents First Wind in this matter).
Jay Peak Resort swaps land with state | The Burlington Free Press
Officials say a land swap at Jay Peak will protect hiking trails and benefit the mountain's ski resort.

Under the deal to be completed on Tuesday, Jay Peak Resort will get nearly 60 acres it now leases from the state. In exchange, the ski area will give up its lease on 418 acres in Jay State Forest and sell more than 150 acres to the state and the Green Mountain Club.

Officials say the exchange, which represents 10 years of work between the parties, will allow Jay to build a new base lodge and upgrade a ski lift and ensure that three and half miles of the Long Trail are permanently protected.
Lake Champlain cleanup dispute headed to EPA | The Burlington Free Press
A federal judge has rejected Vermont's request that he throw out a lawsuit seeking stricter limits on pollution of Lake Champlain.

U.S. District Judge William Sessions said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency may reconsider its 2002 approval of the phosphorus pollution limits set by Vermont. If the EPA finds those limits inadequate, it could impose tougher ones.

Phosphorus is a plant nutrient found in human waste, animal manure and commercial fertilizer. It is the lake's primary pollutant, feeding weed growth and noxious algae blooms.
Food for thought: Vermont publisher teaches children about local, organic foods | Examiner.com
Since Vermont's Senator Leahy has played a key role in passing innovative changes to the Federal school lunch program, north central Vermont authors and illustrators at Radiant Hen Publishing are creating children's books that feed not only the mind, but teach about local, organic foods. The books can be found in schools, and even on the menu at Juniper's Restaurant in Lyndonville, Vt.