Thursday, January 13, 2011

Vermont Environmental News, January 13, 2010

Leunig's restaurant turns to the sun for power | The Burlington Free Press
Leunig’s Bistro & Cafe owner Robert Fuller has flipped the switch on an array of 120 solar panels on his roof that will generate about 20 percent of the electricity his building requires.

The array will service the 10,000-square-foot building.

The system cost Fuller about $180,000 to install; $49,900 of that came in the form of a zero-interest, five-year loan from Burlington’s Community and Economic Development Office. Thanks to the CEDO loan and other incentives including state tax credits, Fuller said Friday he hopes to pay off the system in about 10 years instead of the 25 years he was planning on originally. (Disclosure: SDRS Represents Robert Fuller)
PSB to hold Yankee closure hearings | WCAX.COM
The Vermont Public Service Board holds hearings later this week on a request by two environmental groups to shut down Vermont Yankee.

The Conservation Law Foundation and the New England Coalition made the request nearly a year ago after problems with leaking radioactive tritium first came to light. The groups have argued that the plant be shut down until the leaks were fully resolved.

Those hearings run Tuesday through Friday in Montpelier.
Vermont department seeks bat information | The Burlington Free Press
The Vermont Department of Fish and Wildlife is asking people to report any unusual bat activity this winter.

It's part of an effort to study the spread of white-nose syndrome, which has decimated bat populations in the northeastern United States.

Biologists said bats afflicted with the syndrome might awaken from hibernation and leave the caves and mines where they spend the winter, apparently in search of food.
Group presents plan to boost state's farm and food economy | The Burlington Free Press
A new report predicts that 1,500 jobs could be created in Vermont over the next decade if residents double their consumption of locally produced food.

The Farm to Plate Strategic Plan presented to lawmakers and the governor Wednesday outlines 33 goals and 60 strategies for boosting the state's food and farm economy. Those, along with public, private and philanthropic investments, could lead to an increase in economic output by at least $177 million per year, said Ellen Kahler, executive director of the Vermont Sustainable Jobs Fund, which developed the report.