Farm and Energy Initiative Projects

Student researchers at Vermont Law School's Institute for Energy and the Environment are investigating legal issues in energy and agriculture through our three existing Farm and Energy Initiative projects.

Farmland Solar Policy Project

The Farmland Solar Policy Project identifies options for regulating solar development with the goal of expediting development that supports farm viability, farm access to clean energy, continuation of agricultural land uses, and other solar development that is clearly in the public interest. Explore our Farmland Solar Policy Design Toolkit and State Law Database for examples of farmland solar development policies across the United States.

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Large-scale agricultural irrigation

Beneficial Electrification in Agriculture

This project aims to encourage beneficial electrification in agriculture to help build a more sustainable, stable, and greener food system within the energy transition. Our research helps to inform farmers, utilities, and policy makers about the advantages of beneficial electrification and opportunities to advance change.

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Cannabis growing in a large commercial greenhouse

Cannabis and Energy Law Project

Commercial cannabis production facilities use an enormous amount of energy. This project researches state and local laws regulating energy planning, energy efficiency, and renewable energy consumption in cannabis growth operations.

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Healthy Soils Law Project

The Healthy Soils Law Project is an investigation of strategies for state governments to develop policy mechanisms that effectively support environmental stewardship in U.S. agriculture. Explore our research on soil management, ecological agriculture, soil health and the law. Or, dig a little deeper with our report on the benefits of public investment in Vermont soil conservation and our searchable literature review organizing existing research on compensation for ecosystem services.

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Anaerobic Digestion & Organic Waste Management

This Anaerobic Digestion and Organic Waste Project identifies policies and business models promoting the economically viable and sustainable use of anaerobic digesters on farms and in the food and beverage industry. Never heard of Anaerobic Digestion? Take a look at our Frequently Asked Questions or listen to our podcast mini-series that provides an introduction to the technology, discussing the benefits and drawbacks of using digesters to recycle organic waste into renewable energy and fertilizer.

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