Hartford's Energy Challenge—Cut Usage 15 Percent (per capita) by 2025
On Monday, June 18 Hartford will hold the second of five public forums in conjunction with a rewrite of the town plan. Monday's meeting, starting at 6:30 at The Vermont Institute of Natural Science (VINS) in Quechee, will focus on energy and transportation. We all know how town plans relate to open land, farms, stores and other issues related to development. But what part will energy play in Hartford's new town plan? We contacted Hartford Energy Coordinator Geoff Martin for the answer and learned that an energy chapter in the town plan is not just a good idea—it's the law.
The Observer: Why and when did "energy" become so important in town planning?
Martin: In 2016, the state published its Comprehensive Energy Plan (CEP), designed to put the state on a path to curb greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, reduce energy use, and dramatically increase the use of renewable energy. The specific goals are as follows:
*Meet 25% of the remaining energy need from renewable sources by 2025, 40% by 2035, and 90% by 2050.
*Reduce GHG emissions 40% below 1990 levels by 2030, and 80% to 95% below 1990 levels by 2050.
*Reduce total energy consumption per capita by 15% by 2025, and by more than one third by 2050.
*Meet these three end-use sector goals for 2025: 10% renewable transportation, 30% renewable buildings, and 67% renewable electric power.
The state expects each town to do its part to reach these goals, and develop a plan that puts each town on a path towards achieving them. Hartford must, therefore, include in its plan strategies and actions in the transportation, buildings, and electricity sectors that reduce energy use and increase the use of renewable energy at the pace set out in the state's CEP.
The Observer: What trends have impacted the energy sector since the last town plan was published in 2014?
Energy and Transportation, Monday, June 25 at 6:30 PM at VINS
Community Facilities/Services/Historic Preservation Wednesday, July 11 at 6:30 PM at West Hartford Library.
Natural Resources and Land Use, Monday, July 16 at 6:30 PM at West Hartford Dothan Brook School
Housing and Economic Development, Monday, July 23 at 6:30 PM at the Town Hall.