(Editor’s note: Senate Natural Resources and Energy chair Chris Bray (D-Addison) emailed the note below in response to a recent inquiry about S.5, the Affordable Heating Act, from Addison County resident Robert Burton. The Chronicle was CC’d. As a result of overwhelming feedback from constituents, Bray and the rest of the Senate agreed to a ‘hard stop’ until 2025. The bill passed the Senate and now goes to the House.)
by Sen. Chris Bray
Whether you believe in global warming or not, the affordable heat act is a transition away from expensive, price-volatile fossil fuels to heating using regulated electricity The governor’s climate action office estimates heating savings of approximately $2 billion through 2050, and this alone is reason enough for us to investigate the plan.
As you might know, when I returned to Montpelier, last week, I worked with the Senate appropriations committee, and we crafted a complete hard stop for the plan being developed under the affordable heat act. That is, the report will be prepared, as per the original bill, in January 2025, but then a separate bill must be passed, in order to implement that plan.
In short, in 2025 we will have answers to the many questions that people have brought forward, and we won’t proceed unless we have clear answers that Vermonters will be able to attain savings.
Returning to climate change: I am always interested to read what you share, and, given my own background in the sciences, I do rely on scientific consensus.
While the relative contributions of biogenic versus man-made greenhouse gases is not precisely known, the data points overwhelmingly to anthropogenic greenhouse gases as the factor that is driving climate change currently.
I’ll respectfully say that the Heartland position that Mr. Wheeler is learning represents an outlier position.
Given the stakes we are talking about here, namely, severely damaging the planet we, and all living things, rely on, I think it makes good sense to be prudent and take steps to reduce the mechanism most widely believed to be the driver of climate change.
Not to mention the money that will be made from sales to China, electric car manufacturers, solar companies, and investors. BIG MONEY except for the working families.
Meanwhile, 5G emitters and repeaters are frying people slowly from the inside out. The pharmacutical companies are bioengineering weapons of mass destruction. The climate change issue is based in depopulation, genocide, the culling of humans. The more people wiped out, the better for the globalist eugenists – careful what you wish for climate activisits.
I notice that Sen. Bray says, “I do rely on scientific consensus” with regard to any information we might share with him regarding climate change. He needs to be reminded that consensus has nothing to do with science. And, his saying this in the context of that sentence indicates he won’t listen to views diverging from his own. Here are Michael Crichton’s thoughts on consensus, which I swiped from a website:
Consensus Is Not Science
The late Michael Crichton, MD, author, film producer, put it this way:
“I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you’re being had.
“Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics. Science, on the contrary, requires only one investigator who happens to be right, which means that he or she has results that are verifiable by reference to the real world. In science consensus is irrelevant. What is relevant is reproducible results. The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.
“There is no such thing as consensus science. If it’s consensus, it isn’t science. If it’s science, it isn’t consensus. Period.
“In addition, let me remind you that the track record of the consensus is nothing to be proud of”
(From a talk at the California Institute of Technology on January 17, 2003, printed in Three Speeches by Michael Crichton, SPPI Commentary & Essay Series, 2009.)
bray’s hubris rivals that of bernie sanders.
Disingenuous and condescending, with a seemingly naive knowledge of Vermonts electrical grid and the capabilities of current technology. One might easily suspect bray is but a “paid spokesperson” advertising for a client, rather than a duly elected representative- bound by an oath to serve a constituency rather than a master and their ideology.
Yeah right, just like the reliance on Fauci the “science”. Computer models and scientism that function to fulfill the desired outcome which is make billions in sales for the sponsors. Call me cynical, I’ve learned from the experience of the past few years that neither politicians or “scientists” can be trusted…..especially when they’re virtue signaling.
So “In 2025 we will have answers to the many questions” about S.5. Not all of them , but “many” So when our brain trust came before us with this brilliant act of ignorance this year, Bray is admitting we did not have all the answers, but take heart, by 2025 we should have more of them, still not all of the answers, but “most of them ? Sounds like Pelosi telling Congress to pass Obama Care, and we’ll worry about what it says later. Do “We the People” a favor Senator, the next time you have a brain flatulent, think about it, and present a finished product, not a work in progress.
I for one like the idea of a “finished” product.
As a Conservatively Conservative individual, I have no problem with the goals mentioned by Bray, IF THEY COULD GET IT TO WORK. In fact, renewable is perhaps the best way, when undertaken of one’s own volition, to remove oneself from the grid, where prices are always going to be changing. The problems with these things aren’t the goals, rather it’s the damages that will be done in pursuit of these goals, especially given that even the bill’s proponents admit they do not have the answers. They waste resources and opportunity by prematurely proposing incomplete ideas, when then should be willing to wait and get it right. Progress in technology and policy does happen, but it needn’t alienate vast swaths of the populace to do so. There needs to be nonpartisan discussion and planning groups set up to address these concerns, since it is becoming clear that the Legislature as it has been won’t or can’t do this.
Again, I am a Conservative, so I AM biased in this regard, but I firmly believe that if the State will not address these concerns in a reasonable manner, it is up to each of to take personal responsibility for our futures. We the People, not They the State, need to solve these things for ourselves, for our loved ones, and for each other.
Bray Translation: “just trust us”
The major failing of Sen. Bray’s position, and that of Senators who voted to advance S.5 as modified, is a misunderstanding of the New England electric grid of which Vermont is a part.
The dominant electron source in the New England grid comes from natural gas fired power plants which are base load. That means they can deliver electricity into the grid 24/7/365.
Too many residents in Vermont believe that when GMP declares on its website that 100% of its electricity purchases are “carbon-free” (meaning no greenhouse gases are associated with the electricity it purchases), that must mean GMP customers are only using electricity that was produced by carbon-free entities.
That is absolutely 100% false.
Excluding individuals who have rooftop solar that delivers electricity directly into their own homes (after converting from DC to AC), the electricity that GMP customers consume is that determined by ISO-New England (the grid’s regional independent service operator) to represent the optimal mix of different electricity source contributors based on availability and cost.
The resource mix varies, but natural gas is the dominant component (usually ranging from 30-50%).
No matter how much Sen. Gray and other members of the Legislature (and climate justice activists in all of Vermont) advocate for electrification of Vermont, it will not change the fact that the majority of the electricity in the New England grid this year, next year, and for many years to come, will continue to be produced by natural gas (and sadly oil during periods of extreme cold).
Even if every home in Vermont heated with electrically fired cold climate heat pumps it will still be true that much of the electricity that those pumps consumed came from natural gas fired power plants.
Of equal, if not greater concern, is the fact that intelligent people in Vermont know how the New England grid operates, but they prefer that the citizenry remains unaware that even with “total” electrification, natural gas will still be the dominant resource providing electricity into the grid that Vermont is a part of.
The goal, apparently, is to electrify Vermont and if that means allowing an egregious falsehood to exist in the public domain then so be it.
I challenge you to be the believer in science and demand/host an open climate discussion that addresses the declaration of a crisis with the facts and data to support. Bring in a panel of actual climate scientists, toss the IPCC summaries in the trash, and peel the onion on the so called crisis, understand how CO2 and CH4 work in the spectral black body we call Earth, and show us all how CO2 is the driver of recent warming, if you can. Also discuss the benefits of CO2=Life!
If you won’t, than you a consensus believer which has no place in true science.
Is China on board to reduce carbon? They are building coal fired plants every week. But you want me to freeze while China continues increasing their economy.