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New report helps Vt. businesses take on climate change


MONTPELIER, Vt. (watch the clip at:

A new report aims to help businesses and nonprofits take on climate change.

The 24-member Vermont Climate Change Economy Council says organizations can turn the challenges of climate change into economic opportunities. Organizers say the state with its push to renewable energy is already at the center of green economic innovation and that the public and private sector can do even more to encourage businesses that focus on energy efficiency, clean transportation and clean tourism and recreation.

"There's a deep movement here of people looking at the future of their communities and taking hard steps place by place by place. From Burlington Net Zero to Rutland, the Solar City, to the green building cluster down in Windham County, there's a great story to tell of Vermont innovation in that work," said Paul Costello, Vt. Council on Rural Development.

"Regardless of what you think about climate change, the problems that Vermont is facing around limited resources of which climate is one, simply calls out for and presents itself with an immense amount of opportunity," said Joe Fusco, Casella Waste Systems.

The report calls for putting a price on carbon to help push consumers to cleaner energy. But, so far carbon tax proposals have faced steep opposition in Montpelier. It says while some changes will require state regulation or investments, others can go forward now.

Click here for recommendations and the full report.