Beginning with the 2014 fall semester, the Institute for Energy and the Environment launched what is believed to be the first energy clinic at a law school in the U.S. Vermont Law School's Energy Clinic, will provide opportunities for JD, LLM and Masters students to progressively develop the knowledge, skills, and values integral to the practice of energy law and policy, while helping our clients meet local energy needs with reliable, clean and affordable resources. Energy clinicians will undertake projects to resolve energy policy challenges, in a sustainable and socially equitable manner, for both the local community and the world.
During the Energy Clinic's first year, energy clinicians will work locally to develop and promote improved models for community solar that maximize the environmental and economic benefits available for the community members. Student clinicians will develop model group net metering and purchase power agreements that will be openly available for community use. Clinicians will also utilize these agreements to collaborate with solar installers and community based organizations to advance one or more community solar projects. According to professor Kevin Jones, "the Energy Clinic will allow us to expand upon classroom theory and give students the opportunity to develop the actual legal structures for community solar, as well as implement real projects, including spending a day on site installing the solar PV arrays."
Future projects will promote both climate change mitigation and adaptation. In addition to community solar, future clinicians can expect to work on client projects to support building energy efficiency, electric vehicle infrastructure, and local energy system resiliency.
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Energy Clinic Resources
Professor Kevin Jones explains on WCAX the :30 why Vermont's renewable energy programs are flawed and do not lead to additional greenhouse gas reductions.