DEW Holds Ribbon Cutting Ceremony

first_imgWilliston, VT – DEW Construction Corp. held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and Open House at its newly constructed LEED Registered Corporate Headquarters onsite at on September 18, 2008.”We’re happy to introduce our state-of-the-art green facility to both the public and those who helped bring this project to fruition,” said Don Wells, President. “DEW is proud to be the first Williston office building that is environmentally responsible and a healthy place to work.”Governor Jim Douglas was on hand to assist in the ribbon cutting. “We are delighted Governor Douglas joined our celebration. Our dream of constructing this facility was made possible in part by Governor Douglas and his support of all Vermont businesses,” said Don Wells, President. Williston Town Manager, Rick Maguire also spoke briefly at the ceremony, congratulating DEW and thanking them for keeping their business in Williston.DEWs portion of the 28,500 square foot building, (15,900 square feet) provides offices for a staff of 40, three conference rooms with Smart Technology, an interactive television in the lobby, and a 1300 square foot fitness center with locker rooms. Also located in the lower level is a large function room to facilitate company events and meetings.DEW Construction Corp. is one of Vermont’s largest General Contractors offering Construction Management, Design/Build and General Contracting services throughout Vermont, upstate New York and Northern New England.last_img read more

Vermont First Tee Grants 37 Additional Vermont Elementary Schools

first_img(Rutland, Vermont, 8 January 2009) The First Tee National School Program and the Vermont Golf Association, Vermont Golf Association Scholarship Fund, Vermont Golf Course Superintendent’s Association, Vermont Golf Industry Committee, Vermont Professional Golfers Association, Vermont Senior Golf Association, and the Vermont State Women’s Golf Association, have today announced that 37 additional local elementary school physical education programs will participate in the 2009 The First Tee National School Program. The 37 new schools join the 15 schools that entered into the program in 2008.2009 schools: Allen Brook School (Williston), Beeman Elementary (New Haven), Bradford Elementary & Graded School (Bradford), Bridgewater Village (Bridgewater), Champlain Elementary (Burlington), Clarendon Elementary (North Clarendon), Dover Elementary School (Dover), Dummerston School (East Dummerston), Elm Hill Elementary (North Springfield), Georgia Middle School (St. Albans), Grafton Elementary School (Grafton), J.J. Flynn Elementary (Burlington), Kurn Hattin Homes (Westminster), Lothrop Elementary School (Pittsford), Manchester Elementary (Manchester Center), Mettawee Community School (West Pawlet), Mt. Holly School (Mt. Holly), Newbury Elementary School (Newbury), Northfield Elementary (Northfield), Oak Grove School (Brattleboro), Orange Center School (East Barre), Orchard Elementary School (South Burlington), Plymouth Elementary (Plymouth), Rochester School (Rochester), Rumney Elementary School (Middlesex), Stockbridge Elementary School (Stockbridge), Warren Elementary School (Warren), and Williston Central (Williston).2008 schools: Barnard Elementary School, Bristol Elementary School, Cavendish Town Elementary School, Chester-Andover Elementary School, East Montpelier Elementary School, Ludlow Elementary School, Lyndon Town School, Milton Elementary School, Mountain View Community School (Rutland), Pomfret Elementary School, Proctor Elementary School, Reading Elementary School, Rutland Town School, Sherburne Elementary School, and State Street School (Windsor).The National School Program curriculum is based on national physical education standards (www.aahperd.com(link is external)), and utilizes equipment that is designed to be developmentally appropriate, safe and fun for children and beginners. The statewide Vermont golf collaborative partners, corporate sponsors, and individual donors are funding up to 75% of the cost to the schools.The golf community and physical education teachers know it is important for kids to learn activities that provide lifetime benefits while integrating strong character values. The National School Program emphasizes The First Tee Nine Core Values: honesty, integrity, respect, confidence, responsibility, courtesy, sportsmanship, perseverance and judgment.Community support is integral to this program and the statewide golf associations and Vermont PGA teaching professionals will provide the school with information on a variety of instructional and play opportunities for interested students and families. Parents may also check the junior golf Web site: www.juniorlinks.com(link is external) or www.thefirsttee.org(link is external) for more information.”The National School Program is structured to present a quality, school golf curriculum that develops competency, understanding and progression through movement and physical skills,” said Benna Cawthorn, Director of The First Tee National School Program. “Through this program, children as young as five will be exposed to the motor patterns associated with golf, along with the inherent values of the game.”Richard H. Mihlrad, President of the Vermont Golf Association said, “The statewide associations for golf in Vermont are excited to expand The First Tee National School Program into the elementary schools throughout the state. We know the results of our efforts will reap great benefits to the children of Vermont.”About The First TeeThe First Tee (www.thefirsttee.org(link is external)) is an initiative of the World Golf Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization based in St. Augustine, FL at World Golf Village, home of the World Golf Hall of Fame. Its mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf. Since its inception in 1997, The First Tee has introduced the game of golf and its values to over 1.5 million participants and students in 48 states and four international locations – Canada, Ireland, New Zealand, and Singapore. Former President George Bush serves as honorary chairman.For more information, contact Richard H. Mihlrad, President, Vermont Golf Association, by phone (802) 645-1907 or e-mail (rmihlrad@sover.net(link sends e-mail)).Vermont Golf AssociationPost Office Box 1612, Station ARutland, Vermont 05701(800) 924-0418 ▪ (802) 773-7180www.vtga.org(link is external) ▪ vga@vtga.org(link sends e-mail)last_img read more

MicroStrain lands $730,000 Phase II SBIR for energy harvesting RFIDs on Army helicopters

first_imgSource: MicroStrain, Inc. Williston. 9.23.2010 The US Army recently awarded MicroStrain, Inc. a Phase II SBIR contract to continue to develop a comprehensive and wirelessly networked health management capability that can be embedded directly into rotorcraft components. Providing the technology to manage the health of rotating helicopter structural components is expected to significantly reduce operational costs, increase mission readiness, and enhance safety.MicroStrain’s Phase II SBIR effort includes a demonstration of embedded energy harvesting radio frequency identification (EH-RFID) nodes with capabilities of unique identification, performance monitoring, on board storage of component usage history, and remaining useful life.Bridging the gap between design assumptions and actual usage, MicroStrain’s wireless energy harvesting sensors will continuously measure the loads on critical rotating helicopter structures during flight. By converting ambient strain and vibration energies into power, the sensors don’t require battery maintenance.The EH-RFIDs will be compatible with existing wireless sensor data aggregators (WSDAs), which feature an open architecture interface to HUMS boxes. EH-RFID nodes will also be designed to perform autonomously on aircraft which may not have an installed HUMS system. Steve Arms adds, ‘One of the unique aspects of our Army Phase II SBIR effort is that the EH-RFID sensor nodes will be designed to consume very little energy. This facilitates continuous operation using highly miniaturized energy harvesters, which greatly reduces the barriers to embedded sensor installation.’The development of usage tracking RFID nodes with energy harvesting capabilities will represent a major advance by enabling significant cost savings and opening up many new applications in structural health monitoring and machine condition based maintenance.MicroStrain, Inc is a privately held corporation based in Williston Vermont. MicroStrain produces smart, wireless, micro-miniature displacement, orientation and strain sensors. Applications include advanced automotive controls, health monitoring, inspection of machines and civil structures, smart medical devices and navigation/control systems for unmanned vehicles, and energy harvesting technologies.last_img read more

Charlotte ferry schedule set

first_imgLake Champlain Transportation Co,The Charlotte, Vermont, to Essex, New York, ferry crossing will run as scheduled with the M/V Adirondack from Mid-November until the end of December.Beginning January 1, the Governor Aiken will run as long as ice conditions permit.Lake Champlain Ferries has taken delivery on a ferry built by Eastern Marine Shipbuilding in Panama City, Florida. The new ferry will be put in service by January 1 and used as a fill in for LCT ferries that need engine re-builds and US Coast Guard mandated haul-outs.Source: LCT. 11.9.2010last_img

CVPS, DPS agree on smaller rate increase of 7.67 percent

first_imgCentral Vermont Public Service (NYSE-CV) and the Vermont Department of Public Service have agreed to a rate settlement that will reduce a November rate request.Driven by reliability and transmission improvements and increasing power costs, in November CVPS asked the Vermont Public Service Board to authorize an 8.34 percent rate increase under the company’s alternative regulation plan. CVPS and the DPS have agreed to reduce the increase, which is expected to take effect Jan. 1, to 7.67 percent. The agreement also amends and extends the company’s alternative regulation plan.Under the settlement, which must be approved by the PSB, the company’s allowed return on equity would remain at the current level of 9.59 percent. CVPS agreed to reduce its return on equity request and make an additional $13 million investment in the Vermont Electric Power Company by the end of the year, changes that reduced the size of the rate increase.Even with the increase, CVPS states that its rates will remain among the lowest of the major utilities in New England.Under the proposed base rate change, a residential customer using 500 kilowatt-hours per month would experience a $5.91 increase, from $78.11 to $84.02. By comparison, the same customer would pay as much as $121.80 elsewhere in New England, according to the Edison Electric Institute.Since 1999, CVPS rates have risen at a fraction of the rate of inflation in the energy sector, with a handful of increases and decreases, including a 1.15 percent decrease in July. Overall, rates in 2011 are expected to be 21.8 percent higher than in 1999. Based on the latest federal data available, the Consumer Price Index for Energy has increased 81 percent.‘We have worked hard to mitigate the need for a rate increase, and are pleased that the VELCO investment will help reduce the impact on customers,’ President Bob Young said. ‘The increase is driven in large part by increases in power costs and a large increase for reliability improvements and regional transmission costs.‘I wish we could forego an increase, but we must continue to invest in our systems and pay our share of regional transmission costs,’ Young said. ‘While it doesn’t eliminate the impact, I am proud to say we will continue to provide a value that is extremely competitive in the region, even after the increase.’Other Vermont utilities have received rate increases ranging from 3.11 percent to as much as 30.76 percent in the past 8 months.The new rates will serve as the base rates for 2011 under CVPS’s amended alternative regulation framework. Under the plan, CVPS’s rates are adjusted up or down every quarter to account for specified changes in power costs, and annually for specified changes in other costs and earnings.Source: CVPS. 12.22.2010last_img read more

Vermont Law School report blasts use of corn-based ethanol

first_imgVermont Law School,Long heralded as a green alternative to fossil fuel, corn-based ethanol has become a costly distraction that chiefly benefits corporate, political and lobbying interests rather than the American public, the environment, small farmers and rural communities, according to a new report by Vermont Law School’s Institute for Energy and the Environment (IEE) and Food & Water Watch, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit. Titled ‘Crystal Eth: America’s Crippling Addiction to Taxpayer-financed Ethanol,’ the report concludes that corn-based ethanol is unlikely to significantly reduce America’s dependence on imported oil, has a negligible ability to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, contributes to environmental degradation in coastal waters and has been an economic boon for agribusiness giants managed in absentia rather than small and medium-size, locally owned farms, farm cooperatives and ethanol refineries. The report is available on the IEE website at: http://www.vermontlaw.edu/energy/publications/(link is external)The report examines the political contributions and lobbying efforts of some of the largest corporate ethanol refiners to garner ever-larger subsidies, and how the growth of corporate consolidation in the corn-based ethanol sector has been an unintended result of America’s renewable transportation fuel politics, policies and subsidies. The report estimates that ethanol refiners have received at least $22.8 billion in total government financial support between 1999 and 2008.The report recommends that:Corn-based ethanol subsidies should be phased out completely over the next few years in favor of subsidies to biofuel alternatives that are more efficient, economically feasible and environmentally friendly, such as cellulosic and algae biofuel refiners.The renewable fuel standard should be amended to lower the amount of corn-based ethanol qualifying for government quotas.Renewable fuel standards should be increased for second- and third-generation biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol and algae-based biodiesel, which should only receive support if they meet sustainability criteria to qualify for subsidies. These could include a net energy gain for cellulosic or other biodiesel fuels, reduced water utilization, limiting the indirect land use impact on food production and eschewing emerging higher-risk technologies such as nanotechnology and synthetic biology.Farmers who produce and consume their own biofuels on the farm should be rewarded by an energy tax credit for each gallon of ethanol, biodiesel or vegetable oil that they use instead of fossil fuels. Congress has mandated that biofuel use must reach 36 billion gallons annually by 2022. Vermont Law School, a private, independent institution, has the top-ranked environmental law program and one of the top-ranked clinical training programs in the nation, according to U.S.News & World Report. VLS offers a Juris Doctor curriculum that emphasizes public service, a Master of Environmental Law and Policy degree and two post-JD degrees, the Master of Laws in Environmental Law and the LLM in American Legal Studies (for international students). The school features innovative experiential programs and is home to the Environmental Law Center and the South Royalton Legal Clinic. For more information, visit www.vermontlaw.edu(link is external).last_img read more

Speaker insists Vermont Legislature will go home May 7

first_imgAnne Galloway is editor of vtdigger.org by Anne Galloway, www.vtdigger.org(link is external) April 27, 2011 Spring is in the air, and the internal atmosphere of the Golden Bubble is a little odd at the moment. Lawmakers have finished their hardest exams (the budget, tax and health care bills), but they still have all these assignments left that must be finished in order to avoid getting an incomplete. That doesn’t mean there won’t be changes made to bills in conference or that there won’t be differences of opinion over legislation that is still in motion on the House and Senate sides over the next 10 days.But, Smith said, ‘I don’t think we’ve seen the bill that could blow up.’The bills still in the hopper most likely to launch a volley once they’re in play: telecomm, energy, recidivism and the jobs bill. Several issues attached to those bills, namely a retroactive current use penalty reversal for a logging violation by the national corporation Plum Creek, and the governor’s plan to fund the Clean Energy Development Fund using a grant program instead of a tax credit could be trouble.Smith says it all comes down to timing. He’d like to get the energy and jobs bills out, but he seemed to indicate there could be a few incompletes in the offing. ‘Time is getting short,’ Smith said. ‘Energy is currently on the list. I hope it will pass.’There are still a number of items to check off the list, including the medical marijuana dispensaries bill (passed by the Senate, passed out of House Human Services on Tuesday, 8-2), the public records bill (expected to come out of Senate Government Operations today), the open meeting bill (passed by the Senate, now in the House), the palliative care bill (passed by the House, now in the Senate), and the childcare worker unionization bill. The latter, which Smith supports, is expected out of committee next Monday, whether it will meet muster before adjournment is an open question.Smith said he will ask lawmakers in the House to come in on Monday, which they typically have off, in order to make the May 7 deadline.Them’s the rulesThe House GOP, is small (48 members) and consequently unable to turn bills, but at the beginning of the session, Rep. Don Turner, R-Milton, minority leader, and Rep. Patti Komline, R-Dorset, assistant minority leader, made two demands of the Democratic leadership that have had lasting impact. One was a requirement that every bill come with a ‘fiscal note,’ a rundown of any budgetary impacts a piece of legislation might have from the Vermont Joint Fiscal Office.The second is a 24-hour rule for all legislation that comes to the floor. By rule, that’s the standard time in which legislation must be presented to members. Typically, though, as is the case in the Senate, rules are suspended in the interest of expediency. Turner has said members need a full day to read bills before they come to a vote.The House GOP has said, in no uncertain terms, that it will not allow the House Democratic leadership to suspend the rules to rush bills through the same day. Period. And, because the House needs a three-quarters majority to do so, it can’t move to suspend without GOP votes.A case in point? The health care reform bill, H.202, which was held up today because the House GOP wouldn’t suspend the rules to allow the bill to go to conference committee.House Speaker Shap Smith said his schedule has built-in the 24-hour rule in place.Turner is unshakable on this score. If it gets late in the session, and rule suspensions are called for to meet the May 7 deadline for adjournment, too bad. They remain immutable. ‘The Speaker controls the schedule,’ Turner said. ‘If bills sat in committee for three to four months we get blamed ‘ then we hear you didn’t suspend the rules, so it’s your fault.’Both the House and the Senate have named ‘conferees,’ or the representatives for conference committee.Another sticking point between the Speaker and the minority party is likely to be the appointees for the health care conference committee. Turner wants to make sure there is a GOPer in the mix, and he seems to think the Speaker won’t name a Republican on the committee. (Smith has yet to name the members.)Turner is ready to invoke the Mason’s legislative manual and call for a point of order if the Speaker makes that omission.Is the Speaker required to name a member of the minority party on conference committees? No, according to Smith. Will he name a Republican to the committee? ‘Someone from their team should have voted for the bill,’ is his ready response. Mason’s rules are trumped by the practice of the House, and in practice, lawmakers from the minority party who voted for the bill are appointed. Problem is, not a single member of the House GOP cast a yea for H.202. Smith said to expect a skirmish over that one.Turner points to an exception in 2009 when Rep. John Morley was named to the budget conference, even though he voted against it. Smith said he broke with practice that one time because he needed someone on the committee who could communicate directly with the administration ‘ the year the House overrode the budget over Republican Gov. Jim Douglas’ veto.Here’s a list of the conferees for the money bills.AppropriationsHouse: Heath, Johnson, Acinapura (R)Senate: Kitchel, Sears, Snelling (R)Miscellaneous taxHouse: Ancel, Branagan (R), SharpeSenate: Cummings, MacDonald, Ashe (P/D)Capital construction billHouse: Emmons, Myers (R), HooperSenate: Harwell, Mazza, Benning (R) last_img read more

Vermonters urged to take precaution as hurricane Irene approaches this weekend

first_imgGovernor Peter Shumlin today reiterated that Hurricane Irene is currently heading for the United States and is expected to make landfall sometime this weekend.  The current track of the storm has Irene crossing into Vermont as a Tropical Storm overnight Sunday into Monday.  A Tropical Storm designation is based on the fact that maximum winds could be between 39 and 73 miles-per-hour. The Governor, after a briefing today with state and federal emergency officials, said the storm is expected to bring heavy rains and wind starting late Sunday, and could cause flash flooding throughout Vermont and high winds with widespread power outages. Additional briefings on the track and progress of the hurricane will continue throughout today, Friday and the weekend. ‘Although we hope the storm weakens and moves offshore, Vermonters need to prepare for the possibility that Hurricane Irene hits our state,’ Gov. Shumlin said. Topping the list, he said, is for Vermonters to monitor weather information from the National Weather Service (www.nws.gov/btv(link is external) ), radio and TV broadcasts, print media, or Internet sources. In addition, Vermont Emergency Management’s preparedness instructions include: â ¢                    Clearing your yard of toys, lawn furniture and other objects that could become dangerous if blown around in high winds.â ¢                    Stocking up on water, non-perishable food and other supplies to be able to shelter at homes for up to three days.â ¢                    Preparing for power outages by stockpiling flashlights and fresh batteries and a battery powered radio.  If you have a generator, ensure that it is professionally installed and can be operated without causing a carbon monoxide hazard. Report outages to your electric utility.  Be sure you have at least one phone that does not need electricity.â ¢                    If local officials order an evacuation, respond immediately.  Plan your evacuation route ahead of time, one that brings you over high ground.â ¢                    Use text messaging to communicate with family and friends during a storm if possible, rather than cell phone calls. Texts use much less bandwidth than cell phone calls and messages are more likely to get through. Gov. Shumlin said Department of Public Safety Commissioner Keith Flynn has ordered all necessary resources of his department to be directed toward preparation for the worst-case scenario for the storm. In addition, Vermont Emergency Management has arranged for staffing for the state Emergency Operations Center over the weekend should conditions warrant. State agencies, including Transportation and Agriculture, are preparing now for potential problems impacting their jurisdictions; the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is charged with monitoring the Yankee nuclear plant in Vernon; hospitals will report to the Department of Health as warranted. VEM has been in constant contact with the National Weather Service to receive updates as they become available, and has arranged for resources from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to be deployed to Vermont should assistance be necessary.  FEMA already has a presence in Vermont at its Joint Field Office for spring storm recovery; these personnel would be activated for the Irene response.last_img read more

Report: U.K. Can Go Straight From ‘Coal To Clean’

first_imgReport: U.K. Can Go Straight From ‘Coal To Clean’ FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Guardian:The U.K. has no need to build new large gas-fired power stations to replace the coal plants that the government has pledged to switch off by 2025, the World Wide Fund for Nature has argued. The gap can instead be filled by renewables, battery storage and flexible technologies, allowing the U.K. to go from “coal to clean” and skip new gas completely, according to a report by the environmental group.The analysis challenges the orthodoxy that phasing out coal will require large new gas plants. Gareth Redmond-King, the WWF’s head of climate and energy, urged ministers to ensure the review does not open the door to gas.He said: “If we don’t need large-scale gas, if it can’t compete with renewables and there’s no need for it, why would you need a route to market for it? It is essential the government does not substitute one dirty power source for another.”The last large gas plant to be built in the U.K. was in Carrington in 2016 – the first since 2012.Using official government forecasts, the WWF found that the growth in electricity produced by wind, solar and other renewables would more than replace the lost power from old coal plants. Around 95% of that renewable energy capacity is already being built or contracted under government subsidy deals. Most of the growth will come from windfarms out at sea.The government has allocated a £557 million pot of funding for more renewables subsidies between now and 2025. That should bring forward the remainder of the new capacity needed as coal drops off the grid.More: ‘From Coal To Clean’ – UK Does Not Need To Turn To Gas, Says WWFlast_img read more

Peabody’s domestic thermal coal sales down sharply in first quarter

first_imgPeabody’s domestic thermal coal sales down sharply in first quarter FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Platts:Despite drops in coal shipments and revenues in the first quarter driven by multiple weather and market related disruptions compared to the year-ago quarter, Peabody Energy executives remain optimistic about future global demand and need for coal, particularly in the developing Southeast Asian countries.“In 2019, we expect retirements and gains by natural gas to continue to weigh on coal demand. CEO Glenn Kellow said. “On the other hand, strong seaborne pricing provides an outlet for US thermal exports.”Peabody’s total coal sales were 40.5 million [short tons (st)] in Q1, down 16.1% from Q1 2018, while revenues for the producer in the first quarter were $1.25 billion, down 14.4% from the year-ago quarter.Peabody’s total thermal operations sold 33.2 million st in Q1, down 18.6% from Q1 2018. Powder River Basin shipments were 25.3 million st, down 22% year over year given winter weather and flooding affecting rail performance.The producer’s Midwestern US operations shipped 4.2 million st, down 10.6% from the year-ago quarter, while its Western US operations sold 3.7 million st, flat from Q1 2018.Thermal sales projections for 2019 from the PRB are 105 million st-115 million st at an average price of $11.25/st, ILB of 17.5 million st-18.5 million st at an average price of $42/st and Western of 11 million st-12 million st.More: Peabody coal sales and revenues drop on year; global demand expected to remain strong: executiveslast_img read more