John Herrick

John Herrick

John Herrick joined VTDigger in June 2013 as an intern working on the searchable campaign finance database and is now VTDigger's energy and environment reporter. He graduated from the University of Vermont with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a minor in Spanish. He wrote for the Vermont Cynic, university’s student newspaper, before interning and later freelancing for the Burlington Free Press.

Email: [email protected]


    Lawmakers to revisit fossil fuel divestment

    Sen. Anthony Pollina, file photo by Josh Larkin.

    In 2014, a bid to divest state retirement funds from fossil fuel industries failed in the legislature. Activists plan a new push in the new year, and one state senator promises to reintroduce divestment legislation. State Treasurer Beth Pearce opposes the move, saying she prefers to have “a seat at the table” with the industry.

    A call for action on Vermont endangered species

    Collin O’Mara, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation, gave the keynote address at the a symposium to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act at the ECHO Center in Burlington on Thursday. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

    At a forum celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act, experts said that some progress has been made, but new threats must be addressed. Chief among them are climate change and forest fragmentation.

    Public responds to proposed GMO labeling rules

    Products containing genetically modified ingredients would have to disclose that information on the back of the package near the nutritional facts under Vermont’s bill. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

    The Attorney General’s Office is taking comments on rules that will govern the labeling of food products that contain genetically modified ingredients.

    State rejects ban on motors at Wolcott Pond

    Boats with small motors can continue to use Wolcott Pond, the state's Department of Environmental Conservation ruled Wednesday, Oct. 21, 2014. Vermont Fish and Wildlife photo

    Petitioners claim 5 mph speed limit was not being enforced, but the Department of Environmental Conservation elects to permit small motors and improve signage and enforcement.

    Regulators fine GMP for wind project noise violations

    Anti-GMP signs are outside a house at the foot of the access road leading to the turbine site. Photo by Andrew Stein/VTDigger

    The utility will shoulder the cost of a continuous sound-monitoring program at the wind farm on Lowell Mountain.

    Vermont utilities could lose millions of dollars in energy credits

    Lowell wind JH

    The Vermont Legislature looks to set a renewable portfolio standard that would establish by law how much electricity generated from wind, solar and other renewable resources utilities must sell to customers.

    Entergy pegs decommissioning cost at $1.24B

    Spent fuel rod storage containers, at Entergy Vermont Yankee. File photo by Zachary P. Stephens/Brattleboro Reformer

    Entergy releases its plan for removing the Vernon nuclear power plant, which calls for a SAFSTOR process that would have the plant sit idle for at least 25 years. State officials had hoped for 10 or 15 years.

    EPA puts off Lake Champlain ruling till spring


    Decisions gives Vermont more time to map out strategy, funding options for reducing phosphorus pollution in Lake Champlain.

    NG Advantage sells majority stake to California firm

      A California-based natural gas company has acquired a majority stake in NG Advantage, a Milton company that delivers compressed natural gas to commercial and industrial customers. Clean Energy Fuels Corp., a provider of natural gas fuel for transportation, purchased a 50.1 percent share of NG Advantage on Wednesday. The company owns about 500 natural […]

    Conservation group releases legislative scorecard

    A Vermont environmental group released a scorecard on Wednesday that ranks lawmakers on environmental policy positions in the last legislative session. Vermont Conservation Voters tallied lawmakers’ positions on key environmental and energy issues last session, including new regulations for development on lake shorelines, toxic chemicals in children’s products and genetically modified ingredients in food products, […]

    New weather model will prepare utilities for severe storms

    Mary Powell, CEO of Green Mountain Power, joined state and private company officials to announce the Vermont Weather Analytics Center at a news conference at the State Emergency Operations Center in Waterbury on Wednesday. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

    Vermont Electric Power Co. is investing $16.6 million in a new weather forecasting tool that will better predict severe storms. The system should help utilities and state agencies prepare for weather events, and facilitate recovery efforts.

    Attorney General drafts GMO labeling rules

    The state Attorney General’s Office has released its proposed rules to enforce Vermont’s first-in-the-nation law requiring the labeling of foods containing genetically engineered ingredients. The rules, announced Wednesday, will be the subject of three open meetings later this month. Certain food products with genetically modified ingredients not exempt under the law must have a “clear […]

    Net metering booms in Vermont

    A solar panel and battery storage system at Northern Reliability’s test center in Waitsfield. Photo by John Herrick/VTDigger

    Vermont’s net-metering program has grown sixfold over the past five years, and is expected to continue to accelerate before the uncertain changes to the federal solar tax credit in 2016.

    State reaffirms support for Vermont Gas pipeline

    Vermont Gas building

    State officials say the pipeline does not need to be re-evaluated, in spite of a significant increase in estimated cost. Opponents of the pipeline have called for a reopening of the case by the Public Service Board.

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