VTDigger covers electric utilities, renewable energy, nuclear and natural gas industries in Vermont. Mike Polhamus is our energy reporter. He can be reached at [email protected]

Vermont has third highest per capita number of solar jobs in the nation

In 2015 alone, the state put 34.4 megawatts of solar energy into use, bringing total installed solar capacity in Vermont to 104.4 megawatts.

Army Corps of Engineers approves $1.2 billion power cable

TDI New England now has two of three required permits for the cable, which would run under most of the length of Lake Champlain.

Federal court tosses state’s suit over Vermont Yankee fund

The state argued the federal government had improperly expanded use of Vermont Yankee’s decommissioning trust fund. In dismissing the suit, the appeals court said Vermont invalidated its own complaint by also filing a challenge with the NRC.

Vermont Yankee security endorsed by Nuclear Regulatory Commission

While federal regulators have approved security changes implemented since Vermont Yankee’s shutdown, officials say they cannot release details.

Federal review finds no issues with Vermont Yankee cleanup plan

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission says Entergy’s post-shutdown decommissioning activities report is consistent with federal regulations. The report includes Entergy’s cost estimates for terminating its license at the Vernon site.

Gas plant developer eyes Vernon dairy farm

In the final public forum before a referendum on the possibility of putting a gas-fired power plant somewhere in Vernon, a farm owner disclosed that his family has been in touch with developers about selling land for the facility.

Groundwater problem emerges at Vermont Yankee

Although owner Entergy says it had expected groundwater to enter a turbine building at the Vernon plant, the amount has far exceeded predictions.

State sets hearings on Vermont Yankee fuel debate

The Public Service Board has scheduled hearings Feb. 23 and 24 on Entergy’s plans to store radioactive spent nuclear fuel at Vermont Yankee. The company is hoping for state approval by May, though the issue remains controversial in Windham County.

Vermont Yankee water testing debated

Vermont officials want to continue independent water monitoring – at Entergy’s expense.

Protesters block access where Vermont Gas line would go

The protesters waited in a cold wind for about an hour before hearing that state officials had called off a site visit.

Solar task force: Use tools short of veto to bolster local control

Advocates of local control have long called for municipalities to be given the power to nix energy projects. The siting standards the task force has recommended should address these concerns, a member said.

Entergy spent down 10 percent of Vermont Yankee trust fund in 2015

Vermont Yankee owner Entergy says it withdrew $58 million from the Vernon nuclear plant’s decommissioning trust fund in 2015. With administrative expenses and investment income figured in, the fund decreased by about $69 million last year – a roughly 10 percent decline.

Shumlin budget cuts radiological emergency program

With Entergy’s mandatory emergency funding set to end, officials plan to cut the state’s Radiological Emergency Response Program and close its Brattleboro office in fiscal year 2017. But there’s a chance Entergy could continue providing some money voluntarily.

Stowe, Hyde Park voters approve solar projects

Stowe and Hyde Park residents authorized their electric departments to take out loans to build solar farms.

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