Vermont’s energy future: a Canadian view

[Note to the reader: Simply an interested observer, I have no connection with Valener Inc., such as owning or promoting its stock.]

Vermonters can explore and invest in Vermont’s Canadian energy future through investor-owned Valener Inc. (Toronto Stock Exchange: VNR;

Public Valener owns 29 percent of Gaz Métro Limited Partnership; private Gaz Métro Inc. owns 71 percent.

Providing customary reports to investors, Gaz Métro executives and directors have informed Valener stockholders that the Canadian natural-gas pipeline serving Franklin and Chittenden Counties will be extended from Burlington to Middlebury by 2015 (Investor Presentation, May 26, 2011, p. 22).

An interesting map of CVPS’s and GMP’s territories shows that southern and central Vermont’s energy future is already Canadian, but northern Vermont’s energy future is still in play (Consolidated Financial Report, June 30, 2011, p. 14).

It also identifies just one major power plant in Vermont: Vermont Yankee. Vermont’s Comprehensive Energy Plan includes a natural-gas-fueled replacement as an anchor load to facilitate extending the pipeline to Middlebury and beyond (p. IV-93).

Environmental lobbyists may shoot down these projects as they did the proposed Albany-Bennington-Rutland natural-gas pipeline and power plants. If they do not object, we should ask why they changed their minds.

Howard Fairman
Vernon, Vermont, USA