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Tagged : vermont

Utility will convert Vermont streetlights to LEDs

February 19th, 2010

From Green Right Now Reports

Light Emitting Diode (LED) technology, already making inroads in the traffic signal and Christmas tree light industries, will get a new application in New England: Green Mountain Power has submitted a plan to the Vermont Public Service Board to offer LED lights in streetlights throughout its Colchester, Vt., service area.

The more energy-efficient lights would replace worn-out mercury vapor lighting. Already, the Colchester utility is the first electric utility in New England to offer an LED rate for outdoor lighting.

If the plan gains approval from regulators, customers will be able to request LEDs when installing new streetlights or replacing old ones. Mercury vapor lights will be phased out over time.

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The scoop on poop: Dairy operations power themselves

August 7th, 2009

By Shermakaye Bass
Green Right Now

Okay, here’s the poop on cow power: Dairy farmers from Wisconsin to Vermont are learning that they – and their bovine partners – can produce more than milk and manure. By converting the methane from cow patties into electricity, rural farms can provide their community with power – and in the process, eliminate the odors associated with dairy farming.

“The neighbors like it,” quips Steve Costello of the Central Vermont Public Service (CVPS)’s Cow Power program, which supplies 4,000 customers with the help of 6,000 cows. “You can have a barbecue on the Fourth of July without worrying the dairy farm next door is going spread some manure and wipe everyone out!”

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Tomatoes going south, up north — tomato blight worse than usual

July 23rd, 2009

By Christopher Peake
Green Right Now

“Just the thought of tomato blight sends fear into the heart of every farmer.” Those are the words of organic farmer Charlie Reid, who operates two small farms in southeastern New Hampshire. “We’ve been lucky this year … so far,” says Reid. “Lots of farmers have had to pull (dig up and destroy) their entire tomato crops. But with all this rain and so little sun my luck could change (for the worse) overnight.”

Blight is a highly contagious fungus that hits both tomatoes and potatoes. The Potato Famine in Ireland in the late 19th century was caused by blight. And now blight is killing both tomato and potato crops in New England and in some mid-Atlantic states. It’s not yet an epidemic, but cause for concern for both farmers and consumers, as well as home garden growers who unwittingly used infected seedlings.

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The 17 states seeking to regulate auto emission standards

January 26th, 2009

From Green Right Now reports

President Barack Obama today ordered the Environmental Protection Agency to review its previous refusal to allow California and more than a dozen other states to raise emissions standards above and beyond the national standard. The Bush administration had denied the requests.

“Instead of serving as a partner, Washington stood in their way,” President Obama said. “The days of Washington dragging its heels are over.”

And in what he called “a down payment on a broader and sustained effort to reduce our dependence on foreign oil,” President Obama directed the Department of Transportation to establish higher fuel efficiency standards for carmakers’ 2011 model year. The standard, known as Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE), was established in 1975 in the wake of the Arab Oil Embargo.

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Turn waste into food

October 3rd, 2008

By Tim Sanders

Here’s an excerpt from my new book, Saving The World At Work:

Every day at work, you are surrounded by waste that could be easily converted into social nutrition for your community. Have you ever counted all the broken or outdated computers, monitors, printers, phones, desks, and chairs gathering dust?

Many innovators are turning their trash into food by partnering with nonprofit groups with expertise in preparing used items for community distribution. Electro-Motive, a LaGrange, Illinois–based manufacturer of electric-diesel locomotives, took a novel approach to a recent company-wide upgrade of its computers. Instead of throwing out 700 old computer workstations, the company donated them to Chicago’s Computers for Schools, a nonprofit that refurbishes computers for local school systems. And when executives discovered that the recycling program was popular with employees, they organized a three-day recycling drive. Employee enthusiasm was so high that organizers created a follow-up event for the general public at Chicago’s United Center. Between the two events, more than 80,000 pounds of computer and office equipment were collected.

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NE regional greenhouse gas initiative begins

September 26th, 2008

By John DeFore

This week, for the first time in the United States, an auction was held allowing power plants to bid against each other for the right to spew carbon dioxide into the air.

The goal, of course, is to reduce atmospheric carbon by finding the best way of putting a price tag on it for polluters. Ten Eastern states — Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island and Vermont — have formed the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (or RGGI, pronounced “Reggie”) to coordinate their efforts by placing mandatory overall caps on emissions levels, then auctioning off allowances for CO2 emissions that can be traded between companies. As a result, companies will have a financial incentive to clean up their own act as quickly as possible.

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