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Thursday, July 20, 2017
An Executive Order to reaffirm Vermont’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors of the economy and create the Vermont Climate Action Commission to develop effective actions to meet those goals.
STATE OF VERMONT
EXECUTIVE ORDER NO. 12-17
[Vermont Climate Action Commission]
WHEREAS, through the 2016 Comprehensive Energy Plan, Vermont has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by at least forty percent below 1990 levels by 2030 and eighty to ninety five percent below 1990 levels by 2050, and meeting ninety percent of energy needs from renewable sources by 2050; and
WHEREAS, while significant progress has been made in reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity sector through the partnership of the nine Northeast states that form the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, comparable emissions reductions from other sectors that contribute to more than ninety percent of greenhouse gas emissions in Vermont have not been achieved; and
WHEREAS, the State must work with a range of perspectives to develop a strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change that addresses these fundamental principles:
NOW THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, that I, Philip B. Scott, by virtue of the authority vested in me as Governor, do hereby re-affirm Vermont’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors of the economy and create the Vermont Climate Action Commission to develop effective actions to meet those goals:
I. Commission Charge and Process
The Commission shall have the following duties and responsibilities:
A. By July 31, 2018, draft and recommend, for the Governor’s consideration, an action plan aimed at reaching the State's renewable energy and greenhouse gas reduction goals while driving economic growth, setting Vermonters on a path to affordability, and ensuring effective energy transition options exist for all Vermonters. The plan shall include specific actions recommended by the Commission to:
(i) implement the long-term policy goals of the Vermont Comprehensive Energy Plan;
(ii) reduce greenhouse gas emissions from all sectors, including those sectors not addressed in the Vermont Comprehensive Energy Plan; and
(iii) stimulate or support investment in the development of innovative technologies and strategies that have significant potential to reduce greenhouse emissions in Vermont.
B. Hold public scoping sessions to inform the recommendations of the action plan.
C. On or before December 31, 2017, evaluate existing State Executive Orders which are designed to address climate change issues and recommend, for the Governor’s consideration, updates, modifications or sunset provisions.
D. Convene a Technical Advisory Group to provide additional expertise and analysis of technical issues that may be required to fulfill the Commission Charge. The Technical Advisory Group shall consist of persons available to the Commission on an as-needed basis to provide expertise in climate science; emission quantification; public health; transportation; energy generation, transmission, and storage; energy markets; banking; insurance; regional planning; building design and operation; and any other expertise the Commission deems appropriate.
II. Composition The Committee shall consist of twenty-one members, with representatives from the named sectors listed below to be appointed by the Governor:
A. the Secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources or designee;
B. the Secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development or designee;
C. the Commissioner of the Department of Public Service or designee;
D. the Secretary of the Agency of Transportation or designee;
E. one representative from the Agriculture sector;
F. one representative from the Clean Energy sector;
G. one representative from the Commercial Hauling or Trucking sectors; H. one representative from the Construction or Development sectors;
I. one representative from an Energy Utility;
J. one representative from the Energy Efficiency sector; K. one representative from a statewide Environmental Organization;
L. one representative from the Forestry or Forest Products sectors;
M. one representative from the Fuels sector;
N. one representative from Local Government;
O. one representative from the Manufacturing sector;
P. one representative from the Research and Development sector;
Q. one representative from the Rural Development sector;
R. one representative from a Small Business;
S. one representative from the Transportation Demand Management sector;
T. one representative from the Vermont Community Action Partnership; and
U. one Vermont student currently enrolled at a Vermont academic institution.
III. Chair of Commission and Commission Support The Chair of the Commission shall be the Secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources or designee. The Chair shall name a Co-Chair and may name an Executive Committee to assist him or her with managing the Commission Charge. The Commission shall have the administrative, technical, and legal assistance of the Agency of Natural Resources. The Commission shall have technical assistance from the Department of Public Service; the Agency of Commerce and Community Development; and the Agency of Transportation.
IV. Authority of Agencies This Executive Order shall not limit the independent authority of a State agency to promulgate regulations related to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change in Vermont.
V. Effective Date This Executive Order supersedes and replaces Executive Order No. 15-12 dated December 28, 2012 (codified as Executive Order 10-40). This Executive Order shall take effect upon signing.
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