|A Resource for Energy Efficiency, Renewable Energy, and Sustainable Practices. TELLERENERGY.com is a partnership project of the Coalition for the Upper South Platte, Teller County, and the Governor’s Energy Office. Our goal is to increase energy efficiency and promote renewable energy opportunities in Teller County, Colorado.|
The Pikes Peak Chapter of IEEE along with the Southeast Chapter of the Colorado Renewable Energy Society is very pleased to have Dr. Chuck Kutscher speak on climate change. Dr. Kutscher is uniquely qualified to not only discuss the science of climate change, but also to detail actions that we can take to make meaningful reductions in greenhouse emissions.
Dr. Charles (Chuck) Kutscher is Director of the Buildings and Thermal Systems Center at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado. He has led research in solar heating and cooling, energy efficiency, solar industrial process heat, power plant cooling systems, and concentrating solar power. He is a Fellow of the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) and served as ASES Chair in 2000-2001. He was the Chair of two major conferences: the SOLAR 2006 national solar energy conference and the 2012 World Renewable Energy Forum. Dr. Kutscher is editor of the 200-page ASES report, Tackling Climate Change in the U.S., which details how energy efficiency and six renewable energy technologies can greatly reduce U.S carbon emissions by 2030. He is an adjunct professor at the University of Colorado at Boulder where he has taught courses in engineering and “Climate Change Solutions.” He has a B.S. in physics from the State University of New York at Albany, an M.S. in nuclear engineering from the University of Illinois, and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Time: 07:00PM to 08:30PM (1.50 hours)
All times are: America/Denver
20 N. Cascade Ave.
Colorado Springs, Colorado
United States 80903
No Admission Charge.
Read the entire article here
After an electrical fire charred the interior of their Glenwood Springs home two years ago, Keith and Jan Giezentanner replaced windows, doors, appliances, lights and the heating system with energy-efficient models.
The result is that the couple’s electric bills are half what they were before the fire and their pellet stove consumes two-thirds less fuel. As an extra bonus, they now have a cooling system that keeps the whole house comfortable on baking summer days.
“It’s worth it to spend a little more out front, because you’re going to get it back,” Keith said.
CLEER Energy Coach Erica Sparhawk also helped explain energy efficient technologies and helped the Giezentanners make the most of rebates available from Glenwood Springs Electric and Garfield Clean Energy. By purchasing highly efficient windows, LED light bulbs, Energy Star appliances and a new heating and cooling system, they qualified for $1,400 in rebates to offset costs.
“It was a real pleasant surprise to get those rebates,” Jan said.
The biggest system change was to get rid of the electric baseboard heating system entirely, and replace it with a mini-split air source heat pump. The unit is in two parts, a condenser that takes up a few square feet on their back patio and a ventilation unit mounted on the wall in their living room
The Fujitsu electric-powered heat pump can draw heat from outside air down to about 15 degrees. On a recent 20-degree morning, the system was pushing comfy warm air into the room, heating the entire main and second floor.
Season’s greetings from CUSP!
Wishing you peace and joy this holiday season and through the New Year. We are looking forward to another year of protecting watershed health, and hope to see you in the watershed in 2015!
The Coalition for the Upper South Platte protects the water quality and ecological health of the Upper South Platte Watershed, through the cooperative efforts of watershed stakeholders, with emphasis placed on community values and economic sustainability.
Energy-Wise Willie Asks: “Did You Know? Use Energy Star compact fluorescent light bulbs. Energy Star compact fluorescent light bulbs last longer and use up to 75 percent less energy than standard light bulbs. You can cut your electric bill by $60 per year if you replace the standard bulbs in your five most frequently used light fixtures. Properly dispose of compact fluorescent light bulbs at your local household hazardous waste collection site.
|Dear Market Friends -Have you noticed that good food makes people smile? It’s the center of every celebration at this time of year. Genuinely good food is the heartbeat and purpose of the Colorado Springs Public Market, but only the beginning of a greater story about what’s possible for our community as we embrace the Market’s potential:
The first phase of the Colorado Springs Public Market is to become a part of new gateway entering downtown from the east, in early 2015. Located at the former Gazette printing plant, the Public Market will be a focal point for new residents, working commuters, visitors, bikers and hikers – in space designed to enable us gather and know each other better.
In a short time, we’ve come a long way in the effort to create a new institution in Colorado Springs, one that lives and breathes through our collective appreciation of the importance of good, clean local food. Just as public markets are a centerpiece in many of the most vibrant communities around the world and throughout history, our Public Market will be a destination that helps our city thrive.
On June 2, 2014, the EPA proposed the Clean Power Plan that will maintain an affordable, reliable energy system, while cutting pollution and protecting our health and environment.
If you have not yet sent a comment to the EPA in support of their Clean Power Plan, December 1st is the last day. Here is how:
CSU EIRP Public Meeting Thursday, December 4th 6 PM
Challenges & opportunities
The energy industry, and Colorado Springs Utilities, is at an exciting crossroads of evolving technology – whether it’s helping customers reduce demand, taking advantage of renewable energy or deploying distributed generation technologies such as solar gardens. As digital and wireless capabilities advance, the demand on electricity continues to grow, just as technologies for greater energy efficiency, renewable energies and cleaner emissions continue to evolve.
Some of the factors impacting the new EIRP include:
- Incorporating the Drake Decommissioning Study’s data from engineering firm HDR, Inc.
- New proposed environmental regulations for carbon dioxide CO2)
- Colorado Renewable Energy Standards
- Grid and cyber security requirements
- Demand response (incentives for customers to reduce demand during peak times)
- Customer feedback and budget considerations
- Market risk of natural gas
- Cost of service: fuel prices and overall bill impact
- Interest rates
- The current Energy Vision and UPAC’s Proposed Energy Vision
- Load forecasts
How will the public be involved?
A volunteer Customer Advisory Group (CAG) has been assembled that is representative of residential, commercial and military interests. The CAG is just one aspect of an overall community engagement plan that includes presentations to the community, surveys and public meetings.
Successes, Challenges, and Paving the Way Forward
Join Peak Alliance for a Sustainable Future for a panel discussion with 3 leaders from local initiatives: 1A, 1B, and Restore Tahama Springs!
Susan Davies from Trails and Open Space Coalition will share insights from the campaign to pass 1A, retaining funding for county parks, which passed. Rachel Beck from the Pikes Peak Regional Stormwater Task Force will share insights from the last 2 years working to pass 1B, which lost by a vote of 47% to 53%. And LeeAnn Westfall, a community organizer who is building a grassroots movement to raise $400,000 to Restore Tahama Springs, the Springs Colorado Springs was named for! Join us for this thoughtful discussion on community projects from folks serving on the front lines.
The speakers at this breakfast:
Susan Davies, Trails and Open Space Coalition
Rachel Beck, Pikes Peak Stormwater Task Force
LeeAnn Westfall, Restore Tahama Springs
Wednesday December 10, 2014 7:30am – 9:00am
Ivywild School 1604 S. Cascade Ave, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80905
Bristol Pub (turn right after entering the building and go past the WildCat Room)
No need to RSVP – just come!
Free & Open to the Community
Bring your own breakfast or come early and grab something
in the Principal’s Office or Old School Bakery
The Colorado Energy Office (CEO) and Regional Air Quality Council (RAQC) are pleased to announce funding availability for electric vehicles (EVs) and electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) through the Charge Ahead Colorado program. At this time, CEO is offering EVSE funds for entities located outside of the seven-county Denver Metro Area while RAQC offers funding for both EVSE and EVs within the seven-county Denver Metro Area (Adams, Arapahoe, Boulder, Broomfield, Denver, Douglas and Jefferson Counties). Public, non-profit, and private groups are welcome to apply for either program.
Please note that changes have been made to the application: RAQC applicants are now able to lease or purchase vehicles.
It is strongly recommended that applicants review the application in its entirety prior to submittal. To access the application and a summary of funding amounts, criteria, eligibility and how to apply, please click here.
The next deadline to apply is:
- Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 5:00 PM MST
Please note that all applications must be submitted electronically here.
CEO and RAQC welcome questions at any time during the application process. Please see the Charge Ahead Colorado homepage on the Clean Air Fleets website for more information and/or appropriate agency contacts.
From the Rocky Mountain Institute. Read the entire article here.
Yesterday the United States and the People’s Republic of China reached an historic agreement in the global effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and address the impending consequences of climate change through commitments by President Obama and President Xi.
The U.S. announced plans to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 26–28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025, with a commitment to a “best effort” to realize 28 percent. Achieving those targets will require doubling annual emission reduction rates from a current 1.2 percent through 2020 to 2.3–2.8 percent from 2020 to 2025. This will set the course for the U.S. to realize an 80 percent emissions reduction by 2050.
For its part, China has committed to peak its carbon emissions by 2030, and possibly sooner, capping the emissions growth of the world’s largest emitter. This announcement was the first of its kind for China, which has to-date shied from international commitments. To realize this target, President Xi also announced that zero-emissions, non-fossil energy sources (i.e., nuclear and renewables) would represent 20 percent of China’s supply mix by 2030. (In 2011, zero-emission sources represented less than 9 percent of China’s total energy consumption.)
Following up on work conducted in a 201o Pikes Peak Foodshed Forum (report available here: PP Foodshed Report ), a steering committee has been formed to create a Food Policy Council and to spearhead a Food Forum in February 2015. Christine Faith of Right to Thrive writes:
Food policy councils are an idea whose time has come. The food system, no longer serving the consumer, is a bit of a runaway freight train. Big corporations pushing around small producers, no transparency in practices or ingredients, and communities unable to come together with enough voices to create change. While roughly 30 other cities in the State of Colorado have food policy councils, Colorado Springs (the States 2nd largest city) does not. We have no common space to come together and work-out issues plaguing our community. We have no real idea what groups other than our own are working on. And we have no unity of purpose, a requirement for large scale change. Colorado Springs is a city full of passionate, hardworking go-getters that is getting nowhere. The positive changes we are all working toward are happening slowly or not all. We need a new tool in the tool-kit; that tool is a food policy council.
For more information or to get involved, check out the Right to Thrive website here: http://www.righttothrive.org/author/admin/
Part of the summary from the 2010 forum states:
During the Pikes Peak Foodshed Forum, key stakeholders focused on identifying strengths and weaknesses in our region regarding a sustainable local food and farming system. This crucial first step is the foundation of a comprehensive strategic plan that will drive the cooperative development of the system. By continuing a facilitated, strategic approach we will ultimately implement strategies that will increase capacity, manage competition, and avoid duplication. The Forum was an important beginning for an ongoing process that will allow us to leverage resources, enhance collaboration, and to create a viable regional food system.
The primary goal of the PPFF is to create infrastructure that will lead to economic development for food and agriculturally related businesses in our region. A secondary, but no less important goal of the PPFF, is to build community, collaboration and inclusiveness among people who provide food, whether in its raw state or at some point after its grown and processed.
SARASOTA, FL, and WOODLAND PARK, CO, November 10, 2014 – Sun Hydraulics Corporation (NASDAQ: SNHY) and Sturman Industries, Inc. announce they have entered into a Technology License Agreement related to the use of Sturman’s digital valve technology. Under the agreement, Sun will manufacture and sell valves which incorporate Sturman digital valve actuation technology into screw-in cartridge valves used in fluid power markets.
“By converging Sun’s expertise in hydraulic cartridge valves with Sturman’s expertise in drive electronics and efficient digital magnetics, we believe we can offer our customers unique beneficial solutions for their applications,” commented Allen Carlson, Sun’s CEO and President. “Customers are asking for products which are smaller in size, lighter in weight, use less power, are less expensive and operate faster. New electro-hydraulic cartridge valves under development as a result of Sun teaming up with Sturman will provide these features and create new markets for Sun.”
“We are very happy to be partnering with Sun Hydraulics to bring Sturman’s digital valve technology to Sun’s customers,” said Carol Sturman, President of Sturman Industries, Inc. “Under the agreement with Sun, Sturman will perform the research and development for select new valve products, while Sun will be responsible for production engineering, manufacture and commercialization of them. We’re pleased to support Sun in bringing forward solutions that can benefit the hydraulics industry.”
Concluding, Carlson added, “We look forward to bringing these exciting new products to market during 2015. We believe there are next generation applications in the mobile and industrial segments which can benefit from the use of digital valve technology.”
Sun Hydraulics Corporation is a leading designer and manufacturer of high performance screw-in hydraulic cartridge valves and manifolds for worldwide industrial and mobile markets. For more information about Sun, please visit our website at www.sunhydraulics.com.
Sturman is a leader in the design and implementation of superior process controls to modernize systems that do work. The designs integrate the advantages of miniaturization, flexibility and ultra-fast response by combining intelligent electronics and unique software strategies with digital latching magnetics, and often include the implementation of high power density micro-hydraulics. Sturman specializes in optimizing systems to meet demanding user and environmental needs for smart, efficient, clean and affordable operation. Sturman works with organizations globally that wish to take advantage of this advanced technology. Applications have ranged from aerospace, industrial and commercial products, including water systems, pic-n-place machines, suspension and engine controls. Sturman is currently engaged in programs for commercialization of transformational engine controls that optimize the use of all fuels under all conditions.
The Information Source for Alternative Fuels and Advanced Vehicles
The Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) provides information, data, and tools to help fleets and other transportation decision makers find ways to reduce petroleum consumption through the use of alternative and renewable fuels, advanced vehicles, and other fuel-saving measures.
Here’s the link to the website: http://www.afdc.energy.gov/
Wednesday November 12, 2014
7:30am – 9:00am
Ivywild School 1604 S. Cascade Ave, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80905
Bristol Pub (turn right after entering the building and go past the WildCat Room)
No need to RSVP – just come!
Free & Open to the Community
November 15 & 16
Saturday 8:00am to 5pm and Sunday 8:00am to 4pm
Gettches Wilkinson Resource Center – Wolf Law Bldg. CU-Boulder
Expected Attendance: Min 300 to Max 400
Attendee Fee: $65 | Students and Seniors: $25
Goal of the Summit: Draft a plan to get Colorado on track to drastically reduce its carbon emissions by 2020 and reduce it’s water footprint by 50% by 2025. This is a participatory event!
Please spread the word far and wide to those you know in Colorado working on climate and water issues. The success of this summit is measured by stakeholder participation across the state. That means YOU too!
This will be a fantastic event for anyone dedicated to addressing climate change and Colorado’s environmental issues. It is a state-wide focused participatory summit for citizens, business, and government leaders to come together to make a plan to reduce emissions & water consumption at the state and local level.
ALSO — THERE WILL BE AN OPPORTUNITY TO TEST-DRIVE A TESLA!
Registration required. Find more about the event here.
How would you spend the money you pay in gas tax?
You’re invited to answer that question at: http://www.peakdemocracy.com/2164
in the Pikes Peak Regional Forum, a new online platform where you can let
PPACG know what you think and read what other residents are saying.
You can log in to the Forum using your Facebook, Google+, or LinkedIn
account, or you can sign up using your e-mail address. Thank you for your
interest and participation in the regional transportation planning process.
Solar is the Solution
The Region’s Largest B2B Solar Conference and Expo
The Omni Resort and Conference Center – Broomfield, CO
February 23 – 25, 2015
COSEIA’s annual gathering is the year’s largest business-to-business opportunity for networking with solar industry executives, identifying new market opportunities, gaining insight into the latest information on policy initiatives, and learning about exciting new solar products at the Expo Hall.
We’re finalizing a program filled with industry insiders who have valuable business insights to share. This is your best chance all year to network in the shadow of the Rocky Mountains with hundreds of solar professionals from around the nation.
A dozen separate panels will bring national experts in batteries and storage, electric vehicles and new solar thermal technologies to Colorado. We’ll delve into thorny policy debates on net metering, solar thermal incentives and reducing soft costs. A panel of solar CEOs will highlight coming trends and challenges while utility leaders will forecast the future of utility scale solar.
Download the entire pdf here: DOD_2014_Climate_Change_Adaptation_Roadmap
Climate change will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the Nation and poses immediate risks to U.S. national security. The Department is responding to climate change in two ways: adaptation, or efforts to plan for the changes that are occurring or expected to occur; and mitigation, or efforts that reduce greenhouse gas emissions. This Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap (Roadmap) focuses on the Department’s climate change adaptation activities.
The Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan (SSPP) articulates the Department’s sustainability vision to maintain our ability to operate into the future without decline in the mission or the supporting natural and man-‐made systems. The actions set forth in this Roadmap will increase the Department’s resilience to the impacts of climate change, which is a key part of fulfilling this vision.
The Department has established three broad adaptation goals:
Goal 1: Identify and assess the effects of climate change on the Department.
Goal 2: Integrate climate change considerations across the Department and manage associated risks.
Goal 3: Collaborate with internal and external stakeholders on climate change challenges.
These goals are supported by four lines of effort:
Plans and Operations include the activities dedicated to preparing for and carrying out the full range of military operations. Also included are the operating environments in the air, on land, and at sea, at home and abroad, that shape the development of plans and execution of operations.
Training and Testing are critical to maintaining a capable and ready Force in the face of a rapidly changing strategic setting. Access to land, air, and sea space that replicate the operational environment for training and testing is essential to readiness.
Built and Natural Infrastructure are both necessary for successful mission preparedness and readiness. While built infrastructure serves as the staging platform for the Department’s national defense and humanitarian missions, natural infrastructure also supports military combat readiness by providing realistic combat conditions and vital resources to personnel.
Acquisition and Supply Chain include the full range of developing, acquiring, fielding, and sustaining equipment and services and leveraging technologies and capabilities to meet the Department’s current and future needs, including requirements analysis.
“But the challenge of global climate change, while not new to history, is new to the modern world. Climate change does not directly cause conflict, but it can significantly add to the challenges of global instability, hunger, poverty, and conflict. Food and water shortages, pandemic disease, disputes over refugees and resources, more severe natural disasters – all place additional burdens on economies, societies, and institutions around the world.”
-‐Secretary Hagel Halifax International Security Forum (DoD Arctic Strategy) Nov 2013
Energy-Wise Willie Asks: “Did you know? Only use one refrigerator or freezer. You can spend up to $120 in electricity per year using a second refrigerator or freezer. If you want to use a second refrigerator or freezer during holidays or for special occasions, turn it on one to two days before you need it.
By: Alia E. Dastagir, USA TODAY
See the entire article here.
NEW YORK — More than 300,000 people marched through the streets of New York City on Sunday in what organizers called the largest climate-change demonstration in history.
With banners, flags, floats and drums, protesters at the “People’s Climate March” overwhelmed midtown Manhattan in flocks of vivid color, demanding action ahead of the United Nations Climate Summit this week.
The massive march kicked off at 11:30 a.m. on the ritzy Upper West Side along Central Park before winding its way through the city on a two-mile route. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, former U.S. vice president Al Gore, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio, and actors Mark Ruffalo and Leonardo DiCaprio joined thousands of protesters at the march.
The city of Fort Collins has set and reached numerous sustainability goals, both through its municipal programs and its ClimateWise business programs. The city itself has identified 10 goal areas:
1) Carbon 2) Electricity and Natural Gas 3) Fuel Reduction 4) Solid Waste Reduction 5) Education and Outreach 6) Funding 7) Parks/Natural Areas 8) Water 9) Environmentally Preferred Purchasing and 10) Employee Health and Safety
Their very comprehensive report for the year 2011 is available here: fortcollins-sustainability-2011-report
ClimateWise is a program for businesses in Fort Collins. Its mission is: To build and serve an active group of businesses and organizations that is committed to making Fort Collins a world-class community through climate protection, environmental stewardship and economic vitality. In 2013, it had 362 business partners enlisted, cataloging reductions in waste, energy, water and transportation. The full 2013 ClimateWise 2013 report can be accessed here: fortcollins_climatewise_2013report An example of their successes since their inception in 2000 is this graph of Partner Reported CO2 Emission Reductions:
Do you remember playing outside for hours and being captivated by nature as a child? Would you like to share your enthusiasm for the outdoors with your grandchildren?
Project Learning Tree is offering workshops throughout the month of September tailored specifically for grandparents interested in learning fun and easy activities for engaging 3-6 year olds in the natural world. Early childhood is the best time to ignite interest in life-long learning about the environment, and exploring nature is a great way to spend time together. The 3 hour workshops are hands-on, and participants will take home an activity guide and music CD. Visit http://coloradoplt.org/ for details and to register for the workshops.
Sept. 4 The Wildlife Experience, Parker
Sept. 10 The Gardens at Spring Creek, Ft. Collins
Sept. 11 Denver Indian Center
Sept. 12 South Platte Park, Littleton
Sept. 16 The Hope Center, Denver
Sept. 19 Hudson Gardens & Event Center, Littleton
Sept. 22 Lamb Library, Pueblo
Sept. 28 Woodland Park Senior Center, Woodland Park
Sept. 27 Lookout Mt. Nature Center, Golden
Sept. 29 The Delta Center, Delta
CUSP is a strong supporter of Project Learning Tree, a 40-year-old environmental education program of the American Forest Foundation. I encourage you to explore their website for a wealth of environmental education resources and opportunities.
CUSP Executive Director
Wednesday September 10, 7:30am – 9:00am
Ivywild School 1604 S. Cascade Ave, Colorado Springs, Colorado 80905, Wildcat ROOM 94
Join the conversation with:…
– Dave Munger, Pikes Peak Stormwater Task Force
– Tim Mitros, Stormwater Manager, City of Colorado Springs
– Alison Plute, Watershed Project Manager, CS Utilities
These free and open events are hosted by the Peak Alliance for a Sustainable Future and Fort Carson. The focus of our breakfasts is to share information, identify common initiatives and areas of collaboration to solve current challenges. Join the conversation!
The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) would like to invite you to participate in the 2014 Colorado Wind Energy Forum on October 1, 2014 at the University of Denver. Click here for registration details.
It’s an exciting time for wind in Colorado, as we are consistently ranked among the top 10 wind energy states in the country, with installed wind capacity of more than 2,300 MW – representing an impressive $4 billion in wind investments. At this scale, wind is increasingly cost-competitive and utilities like Xcel are purchasing more wind power in Colorado to lock in fixed, low-price electricity to save consumers money.
Commit just one day and get the most current and pivotal information related to Colorado’s wind energy landscape. In addition, you will:
- Explore benefits and challenges in Colorado’s current wind industry, and learn what the future holds
- Meet with Colorado’s policy, industry, and government leaders
- Interact with wind industry experts on national, regional, and state wind markets
- Learn the ins-and-outs of wind energy transmission, economics, and integration
- Examine the DOE Wind Vision and what it means for Colorado
- Discover wind’s positive impacts on local economic development
We have many new developments and different perspectives to discuss at this year’s Colorado Wind Forum: EPA’s release of the draft carbon regulations, the implementation of SB252 which expanded the state’s renewable energy standard, and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Wind Vision. At the 2nd Annual AWEA Colorado Wind Energy Forum you will have a unique opportunity to learn how each of these current issues, as well as upcoming state and federal elections, may impact future wind development in Colorado.
Register today to join industry professionals for interactive discussions covering a variety of regional topics including Hydro Research Foundation and NHA’s Washington Update, Bureau of Reclamation Briefing, Hot Topics in the Southwest, NHA Operational Excellence, Small Hydro and Conduit Success Stories. Register today!
|Basic Meeting OutlineMonday, September 8, 20146:00 PM – 7:30 PM
Welcome Networking Reception and Networking
Tuesday, September 9, 2014
7:30 AM – 5:30 AM
Full Day Meeting (Breakfast and Lunch provided)
Session Topics to include:
Wednesday, September 10, 2014
9:00 – 11:00 AM
Tour of NREL’s Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF)
11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
Tour of the Bureau of Reclamation
NHA will be holding similar Regional Meetings in other areas of the country throughout the year. Please check www.hydro.org for details.
The Center for Neighborhood Technology, a Chicago-based nonprofit with expertise in water management and urban flooding, has launched a new resource to help individuals, businesses, and communities find solutions to the problem of too much or too little water. The Rain Ready Initiative offers a suite of policies and practices to help residents, communities, and states plan for weather events associated with climate change. Rain Ready helps municipal and state leaders approach the challenges of flooding, water shortage, and/or water pollution in customized and cost-effective ways. Although each state differs in weather, geography, urban development, and population, states can draw from a broad set of actions to help communities protect themselves now and reduce risks in the future. To learn more, visit the Center for Neighborhood Technology’s Rain Ready announcement
Who is CNT?
The Center for Neighborhood Technology (CNT) is an award-winning innovations laboratory for urban sustainability. CNT works across disciplines and issues, including transportation and community development, energy, water, and climate change.
This year the Colorado Sustainability Conference will be held at the Colorado College Campus. Friday September 26 will be a day with high level education for students, business owners, educators and decision-makers in the private, public and military sectors. Friday will feature 2 keynote speakers, 16 different breakout sessions, an exhibit hall with their and products. Day 2, Saturday September 27th, will be a community celebration of Sustainability open to the public. The exhibit hall will be open to all and other kid will be added. A main stage will have short presentations on how families can make simple changes in their lives to become more sustainable.
See the full schedule and more information on our website
Registration page is here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/colorado-sustainability-conference-registration-12642402767
NEEF invites the public to watch its Take a Second video to learn how we can find time for the environment every day, learn different ways you can save energy, show in an Instagram video how you take a few seconds to share energy, and win great prizes by entering the Take a Second contest at http://takeasec.org/
Until October 3, share how you are taking a few seconds to save energy in an Instagram video for a chance to win a Samsung Premium Laptop, a Samsung Galaxy Tab, a $250 Home Depot gift card, and more!
Opportunity to Provide Input on the Pikes Peak Region’s Transit and Specialized Transportation Plans
Your insights and ideas are needed to help shape the future of regional transportation in the Pikes Peak area, to guide future planning for the region’s fixed-route transit system and specialized transportation services that provide door-to-door transportation for people with special needs.
Please attend a community meeting on Thursday, August 28, 2014 from 4-6 pm at the City Administration Building, Room 102. The format will be an open house with multiple opportunities to provide input. A brief presentation and question/answer session will begin at 4:30 pm.
An online questionnaire will be available on the project website by Thursday, August 28th for those of you who are unable to attend.
To stay up-to-date on the 2040 Regional Transit and Specialized Transportation Plans and/or if the flyer below did not download appropriately, please visit: http://www.movingforwardplan.org/transit-and-specialized-transportation
Water is the lifeblood of our state. In order to successfully manage this precious resource, we need to work together on proactive planning that takes future changes and the values of all Coloradans into account.
The Colorado Water Plan was conceived in May 2013 to do just that. Through the work of Basin Roundtables, the Interbasin Compact Committee, and residents across the state, the plan seeks to secure Colorado’s water future by addressing issues such as:
- Increasing demand
- Drought and variable climate conditions
- “Buy and dry” purchasing that reduces the amount of productive agricultural land
- Challenges within and between basins
- Water quality and quantity
- Interstate water concerns
In doing so, the Colorado Water Plan must incorporate:
- Productive economies that support cities, agriculture, recreation, and tourism
- Efficient and effective water infrastructure
- Healthy watersheds, waterways, and wildlife
After many hours of work, basin plans are now ready for your review and comment. Once finalized, these basin-specific plans will be combined into the statewide water plan.
Take a look at the South Platte/Metro Draft Basin Implementation Plan, and leave a comment by visiting the Get Involved page on the Colorado Water Plan website. Please take the time to contribute and share the plan with others.
Look for the entire Colorado Water Plan draft in September on the Colorado Water Plan website.
Thank you for your continued support.
CUSP Executive Director
Solar power is scaling up even faster than cell phones. Watch this intriguing Youtube video put together by the Rocky Mountain Institute that demonstrates the dramatic growth in the solar industry. Are renewables finally becoming competitive with fossil fuels?
Colorado Springs Utilities is soliciting candidates to participate on an advisory group to gain community input on our Electric Integrated Resource Plan (EIRP). The advisory group will consist of 12-15 citizen-owners/ratepayers from the Colorado Springs Utilities service area that represent community values and concerns and who offer equal representation of technical and non-technical expertise. Ideally, we are looking for those individuals who can offer substantive comments and recommendations during public process to aid in the decision making process.
Participation on the EIRP will involve:
•Full participation in meeting discussions and problem solving/decision-making processes, which may require completion of tasks outside of assigned meeting times.
•Assisting in stakeholder identification and the most appropriate means to communicate/engage those stakeholders
•Responsibility for distributing information to your representative groups, and developing ongoing two-way communication with the public process manager.
Applications must be received by August 4, 2014. If selected to serve on the EIRP, you will be notified by August 22.
Download and fill out the application here.
Please visit the http://cspublicmarket.com/ website to explore the progress being made by this project.
Also, check out their Public Circle at http://publiccircleco.com/, a forum to connect and engage our southern Colorado community in the business of true “food shift” toward a local food economy.
Energy-Wise Willie Asks: “Did You Know?” 88 billion plastic bags are used in the U.S each year. This represents 12 million barrels of oil. It is estimated that it takes up to 1,000 years for a plastic bag to decompose. Do your part and limit use of plastic bags or bring your own re-useable bag when shopping.
Have you noticed weeds popping up on your property and wondering what to do about them?
While some weeds may look pretty, these non-natives can cause a lot of harm. Non-native weeds are classified as noxious if they aggressively invade native plant communities or crops; can poison livestock; can carry damaging insects, diseases, or parasites; or are detrimental to the environment. These nasty invaders displace native vegetation, threatening wildlife habitat, valuable natural resources, and recreation areas. Besides the ecological impacts, noxious weeds also cost Coloradans millions in harvest losses, damage to livestock, and lost productivity.
Preventing the establishment of noxious weeds is the best method of control, and can be done by supporting healthy native plant populations and maintaining healthy pastures. But if you have already seen some weeds springing up, dealing with them sooner rather than later save you a lot of time, trouble, and money over the long term.
Click on the following tables to learn more about how to spot and control common noxious weeds in our region. Make sure to always wear gloves and protective clothing when handling weeds to prevent skin irritation, and never dispose of weed clippings in the trash or compost.
The many Farmers Markets currently in operation in El Paso and Teller Counties not only provide consumers with fresh seasonal options, but also help support the livelihood of farmers and ranchers in the area.
You can find farmers markets scheduled for nearly every day of the week from late May through September. Locations include Monument Hill, Broadmoor, Old Colorado City, Woodland Park, Memorial Park and many more. Please check out the excellent 2014 Colorado Springs Farmers Market Schedule on the Springs Bargains’ website: http://springsbargains.com/colorado-springs-farmers-market-schedule/ for a listing.
The PPR 2030
Nearly 100 organizations were involved in the development of the Pikes Peak region’s first long-term sustainability plan – Looking to Our Future: Pikes Peak Region 2030 (PPR 2030). The PPR 2030 strives to improve our quality of life by balancing economic vitality, a healthy vibrant community, and mindful stewardship of the natural resources and environment for current and future generations.
What is PASF?
The Peak Alliance for a Sustainable Future (Peak Alliance) was formed to ensure the vision of regional sustainability continues and the work of so many volunteers does not just “sit on a shelf”. The strength of PASF is in its broad-based support and partnership from many organizations and citizens located in El Paso and Teller Counties. This survey will help PASF celebrate regional progress, generate community-wide enthusiasm, and encourage greater participation in sustainability efforts. To that end, we need to know about your organization’s recent and current projects and your priorities for the future of the region. PASF is asking for your input in this brief survey. The data collected will be used in an education and outreach campaign, and to help us prioritize our efforts going forward.
Thank you for your participation!
Please Like the Peak Alliance on Facebook
By Scott Clement and Peyton M. Craighill, Washington Post
A lopsided and bipartisan majority of Americans support federal limits on greenhouse gas emissions, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll that also finds most are willing to stomach a higher energy bill to pay for it.
Fully 70 percent say the federal government should require limits to greenhouse gases from existing power plants, the focus of a new rule announced Monday by the Environmental Protection Agency. An identical 70 percent supports requiring states to limit the amount of greenhouse gas emissions within their borders. (Read everything you need to know about the EPA’s proposed rules).
Democrats and Republicans are in rare agreement on the issue. Fifty-seven percent of Republicans, 76 percent among independents and 79 percent of Democrats support state-level limits on greenhouse gas emissions. Strong tea party supporters are most resistant to limits on emissions by states and power plants; 50 percent say the federal government should impose caps, while 45 percent say they should not.
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
Projected climate change is a complex multi-decade challenge. Without action to build resilience, it will increase security risks over much of the planet. It will not only increase threats to developing nations in resource-challenged parts of the world, but it will also test the security of nations with robust capability, including significant elements of our National Power here at home. Even though we may not have 100 percent certainty as to the cause or even the exact magnitude of the impacts, the risks associated with projected climate change warrant taking action today to plan and prepare for changes in our communities, at home and abroad.
When it comes to thinking through long-term global challenges, none are more qualified than our most senior military leaders. Not only do they have decades of experience managing risk and responding to conflict on the battlefield, but they are also experts in geopolitical analysis and long-range strategic planning.
Military leaders typically look at challenges with imperfect or conflicting information. Despite not having 100 percent certainty, they weigh the consequences of various courses of action—including the consequences of no action—and make informed decisions based on their experience and risk forbearance.
It is through this analytical prism that 11 retired Generals and Admirals came together in 2007, under the moniker of CNA’s Military Advisory Board, to examine the security implications of climate change. Their landmark report, National Security and the Threat of Climate Change, was the first time that such an elite body of military leaders expressed their concern over the security implications of climate change.
Now, seven years later, the Military Advisory Board has gathered again to re-examine the nexus of projected climate change and national security. This update reflects their decades of experience as risk managers and geopolitical security experts. With the foundation of CNA’s established analytical prowess, the report deserves strong attention from not only the security community, but also from the entire government and the American public.
The update serves as a bipartisan call to action. It makes a compelling case that climate change is no longer a future threat—it is taking place now. It observes that climate change serves as a catalyst of conflict in vulnerable parts of the world, and that projected changes in global migration patterns will make the challenges even more severe. It identifies threats to elements of National Power here at home, particularly those associated with our infrastructure and our ability to maintain military readiness.
The update makes clear that actions to build resilience against the projected impacts of climate change are required today. We no longer have the option to wait and see. We applaud this group of American patriots for this important update. We commend its reading in full and its recommendations to the Administration, to Congress, and to the American people.
Michael Chertoff – Former Secretary of Homeland Security
Leon Panetta – Former Secretary of Defense
Please find the entire Report here: CNA_MAB_2014
National Climate Assessment and Development Advisory Committee
The American Wind Energy Association (AWEA) recently released its Annual Market Report for 2013, as well as its First Quarter 2014 Market Report.
So what’s new?
The U.S. wind industry did not install much wind power capacity in 2013, reflecting the impact of the policy uncertainty that the wind industry faced throughout 2012.
The numbers were small:
- 1,087 megawatts (MW) installed in 2013, compared to 13,131 in 2012 – a 92% drop in new capacity
- Corresponding drop in investment, $2 billion into the US economy in 2013, compared to $25 billion in 2012
- Loss of thousands of manufacturing jobs – ending the year with 50,500 total wind industry jobs, as compared to 80,700 jobs at the end of 2012
In total, though, wind power is making impressive contributions to the U.S. electricity supply:
- Wind now provides over 4% of our electricity nationally
- Iowa and South Dakota get over 25% of their electricity from wind power; nine states get more than 10% and six states get more than 15% of their electricity from wind power
As you may recall, Congress allowed the PTC to expire at the end of 2012. Then, our legislators extended the credit in early January 2013, allowing projects that started construction by the end of 2013 to qualify for the credit (rather than requiring that they be operational by the end of 2013, as required in the past). The uncertainty throughout 2012 caused wind project development to come to a halt, and manufacturing orders to cease, resulting in little development and significant job loss as noted above.
How’s this year looking so far?
The PTC extension in 2013 allowed developers to put plans back in motion. As a result, 2014 is off to a great start:
- Over 13,000 MW of wind power under construction – more than any other time in history – and including over 95 projects across 21 states
- 214 MW of wind power installed so far — more than in the first three quarters of 2013
- Utility companies and corporate purchasers continue to announce agreements to purchase wind power – they announced 8,000 MW of power purchase agreements in 2013, and about another 1,000 MW so far this year
Is there a catch?
Yes – federal policy for the wind energy industry is still uncertain. The PTC expired again, at the end of 2013. Without an extension, the wind industry is looking at the prospect of near-term downturns in project development, and job layoffs as well.
The Senate Finance Committee has acted to extend the PTC, and a credit that developers can choose instead of the PTC, the investment tax credit (ITC). They extended these provisions as part of the EXPIRE Act in early April. The bill moves to the Senate floor for consideration next.
Check out these resources if you’re interested in more information:
- AWEA State Fact Sheets
- AWEA U.S. Wind Industry First Quarter 2014 Market Report
- AWEA U.S. Annual Market Report, Year Ending 2013
by Wayne Heilman, Colorado Springs Gazette
Manitou Springs has agreed to buy all of the electricity for city-owned facilities from a solar array that will be built in the Security area by Colorado Springs-based SunShare, becoming what the company says is the first city in the nation to have all of its facilities powered by a so-called “solar garden.”
Manitou Springs will pay 5.6 cents per kilowatt hour and use about one-fourth of the 2 megawatts of power the array will generate, said David Grossman, a spokesman for Colorado Springs Utilities, which will distribute the power to Manitou.
Read more at http://gazette.com/manitou-to-power-its-municipal-buildings-from-sunshares-solar-garden/article/1518718#kdksO8ZU0QQDY6ZE.99
COLORADO SPRINGS, COLO. — When you think of renewable energy, solar and wind are likely the first to come to mind.
But, at the Martin Drake Power Plant in Colorado springs, wood chips are being turned to fuel, and they say it’s one of the most reliable forms of green power.
Fort Carson has partnered with Colorado Springs Utilities on their “Woody Biomass” project, to trade natural wood waste like pallets, or used lumber for the energy Drake can create.
It’s a win-win, according to Project Manager Terry Meikle; Fort Carson gets renewable energy credit toward becoming a Net Zero Energy Installation, and Meikle gets to study the successes of woody biomass in Drake’s system.
So how does it work? Read the whole article here.
Measuring Sprawl 2014
Some places in the United States are sprawling out, some places are building in compact and connected ways, and the difference between these two strategies affects the lives of millions of Americans.
In 2002, Smart Growth America released Measuring Sprawl and Its Impact, a landmark study that has been widely used by researchers to examine the costs and benefits of sprawling development. In peer-reviewed research, sprawl has been linked to physical inactivity, obesity, traffic fatalities, poor air quality, residential energy use, emergency response times, teenage driving, lack of social capital and private-vehicle commute distances and times.
Measuring Sprawl 2014 updates that research and analyzes development patterns in 221 metropolitan areas and 994 counties in the United States as of 2010, looking to see which communities are more compact and connected and which are more sprawling. Researchers used four primary factors—residential and employment density; neighborhood mix of homes, jobs and services; strength of activity centers and downtowns; and accessibility of the street network—to evaluate development in these areas and assign a Sprawl Index score to each. This report includes a list of the most compact and most sprawling metro areas in the country.
This report also examines how index scores relate to life in that community. The researchers found that several quality of life factors improve as Sprawl Index scores rise. Individuals in compact, connected metro areas have greater economic mobility. Individuals in these areas spend less on the combined cost of housing and transportation, and have greater options for the type of transportation to take. In addition, individuals in compact, connected metro areas tend to live longer, safer, healthier lives than their peers in metro areas with sprawl. Obesity is less prevalent in compact counties, and fatal car crashes are less common.
Finally, this report includes specific examples of how communities are building to be more connected and walkable, and how policymakers at all levels of government can support their efforts.
After four days of hearings, the state’s Air Quality Control Commission adopted rules that will require oil and gas companies to find and fix methane leaks, as well as install technology that captures 95 percent of emissions of both volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which cause air pollution, and methane.
Read more here
By Marija B. Vader
Fort Carson was recently recognized as No. 66 on the Environmental Protection Agency’s National Top 100 list of the largest green power users in the nation. Fort Carson also ranks No. 4 on the Top 10 Federal Government list.
Fort Carson uses nearly 82 million kilowatt-hours of green power annually, which is enough green power to meet 39 percent of the Mountain Post’s electricity use.
As part of efforts to switch from traditional sources of electricity generation and support cleaner renewable energy alternatives, Fort Carson buys a utility green power product from Colorado Springs Utilities. In addition, the installation generates green power from on-site solar energy systems.
Also, Fort Carson has partnered with CSU on a wood biomass energy project for one year. Fort Carson will purchase 10.9 million kilowatt hours of energy. The pilot project runs through Dec. 31.
This sustainable energy purchase will account for 5 percent of the Mountain Post’s total electric use. Additionally, Fort Carson will contribute 10 to 15 percent of the wood needed to generate this sustainable energy and help with the installation’s net zero waste goal efforts, according to a news release from Fort Carson.
According to the EPA, Fort Carson’s green power use of nearly 82 million kilowatt hours is equivalent to avoiding the carbon dioxide emissions of more than 12,000 passenger vehicles per year, or the carbon dioxide emissions from the electricity use of nearly 9,000 average American homes annually.
The WhiteWave Foods Company of Boulder was listed number 62 in the nation’s top 100 green power users.
The list of companies that consumed 100 percent of their power from renewable resources included these Colorado companies: Quantitative Ecological Services of Castle Rock, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory of Golden, the Griffis Group in Denver, Ricoh Production Print Solutions of Boulder, Regis University of various locations in Colorado, Alpine Banks of Colorado, Swisslog Healthcare Solutions of Denver, Wolf Creek Ski Area of Durango, Larkburger of Arvada, Naropa University of Boulder, New Hope Natural Media of Boulder, the Geological Society of America of Boulder, Coda Coffee of Denver, Enviro Friendly Printing of Littleton and others.
For more information about Sustainable Fort Carson, click here
CSU Extension is holding a Free class on radon Sunday, March 9th from 2-3 p.m. at the Woodland Park Library. Please see the attached form for more info.
To attend the class, please RSVP with Mark J. Platten by March 5th at 686-7961 or email@example.com Mark will provide short-term test kits, a DVD, radon handouts, and light refreshments.
If you are unable to attend the workshop, you can still receive free test kits from 1) the building/planning department at 540 Manor Court in Woodland Park, 2) Public Health located behind Venture Foods in Divide, or 3) the Centennial Building, 112 N. A. St. Cripple Creek, to the left as you enter the doors on the lower level.
See the event flyer here: Free radon news program
The Teller County Master Gardeners have put together a month-by-month gardening book for the county. It is 120 pages of full-color articles, photos, gardening journals, and what you should be paying attention to each month. Please see the attached pdf of the cover and table of contents for more info: Teller County Gardening Book Contents0001 The cost of the book is $20 and all proceeds will go back to providing continuing education for the Master Gardeners.
They can accept cash or checks, made to “Teller County Extension Fund.” The books are available from the building/planning department main desk located at 540 Manor Court in Woodland Park, just behind the Casa Grande restaurant.
Questions can be directed to:
Mark J. Platten, Teller County Extension Director, Colorado State University Extension
Although most coursework is offered online, hosting counties for 2014 in-person classes are:
You do NOT have to be a county resident to attend in-person classes in a given county.
ACEEE is releasing the Field Guide to Utility-Run Behavior Programs, the first comparative analysis of programs that focus on changing customer behavior to save energy.
Many utilities have undertaken behavior-based programs to help meet savings targets set by regulators and their own business needs. Our study counted 281 of these programs, many with multiple iterations, offered by 104 energy providers and third parties between 2008 and 2013.
We managed to sort all these programs into 40 different categories, each of them grounded in the behavioral and cognitive sciences and representing a unique way of affecting consumer behavior. If you zoom out, the program types group themselves into three large families…
To continue reading the blog post visit: http://aceee.org/blog/2013/12/using-aceee-field-guide-utility-run-b
To read the report visit: http://aceee.org/research-report/b132
About ACEEE: The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy acts as a catalyst to advance energy efficiency policies, programs, technologies, investments, and behaviors. For information about ACEEE and its programs, publications, and conferences, visit aceee.org.
In total, the Tracker database provides current legislative language, recent actions, bill sponsor information, and policy trend analyses.
There is a new concept in water and energy savings which has made the transition to actual production models – Water Recycling Showers. The amount of water used for showering is staggering, with the U.S. EPA estimating annual water usage in America alone at 1.2 million gallons. Unless you’re the type of person who takes a “Navy Shower” which calls for turning off the water while soaping and scrubbing – using just 2 minute of actual time with the water running, you probably fall somewhere under the average teenage girl’s total of 16 minutes per shower (around 30 – 40 gallons). This habit consumes a huge amount of unnecessary water and energy resources.
Enter the recycling shower. In most of the current designs, the used shower water is collected as it flows through the drain. It is then filtered, by a number of different means depending on design, reheated (modestly, as it’s still quite warm), and combined with fresh water at the spout. The result is anywhere from 70 – 90% water and energy savings. Claims for these systems are up to $1300 savings per year, using 1/30 the water for showering.
Obviously, these systems would be a major advantage for regions which have limited water availability, as well as where cost is at a premium. Even where costs are low and resources are plentiful, recycling showers result in substantial environmental and economic benefits.
The payback for installation for most of these systems is estimated to be around three years. This time frame is obviously dependent on water and utility rates, as well as whether the system is installed as a retrofit or incorporated into new construction. Long term costs would also have to take into account replacement of filters and other potential maintenance.
A quick Google search turns up descriptions and articles about several current manufacturers:
- Orbital Systems
- Water Recycling Shower
- Quench Shower System
- Eco Vea
- and a conceptual Plant Filtration System
This concept is just gaining traction and is bound to become more common, available and preferred as the technology and competition develop.
I recently came across a website touting the “eGallon” price of driving an electric car. The site claimed to compare the price of driving an electric car, by charging via the electric grid, to the price of driving a conventional car, by filling with a statewide average gasoline equivalent.
The average statewide equivalents were given here, in a post entitled “Hippies Must Have Tampered With These Numbers, Right?”
In this analysis, the average price, nationally, to drive electric vehicles averaged about 1/3 the price of driving a conventional car off of gasoline. The comparison was based on current fuel prices vs electric utility prices. The Department of Energy Website is accessible here The Sustainable America site is here To see the actual page on price methodology, click here
After sending this analysis to a friend, who had recently purchased a Nissan Leaf, and has also subscribed to 3 kW worth of power from a solar farm in Colorado Springs, here was his analysis:
My average for past 3 months (getting better as I learn how to drive car) has
My car collects data every time I drive it and uploads it to
Nissan’s web site.
I can login and see how many miles I’ve driven and kwh
consumed for each day, every month, annual (haven’t gotten that far)
That’s 0.2 kwh/mile
Using their calculation egallon = FE * EC *
FE = 30 mpg for Civic
my EC = 0.2 kwh/mile
EP = $0.11 per kwh in
So my egallon price is about
UNLESS you use the marketing info for my LIFETIME cost of
electricity using solar panels. They claim that I’ll be paying about 0.04/kwh
with solar contributing to my CSU bill every month.
If this is true,
my egallon price will be $0.24/gallon (back to the 60’s prices when I started
driving my Dad’s 66 Mustang!)
This indicates that electric vehicles far outweigh their gasoline counterparts in price per gallon. A full lifetime cost analysis would have to be performed to decide whether the cost of replacing batteries would negate the savings of driving an electric vehicle. Also, every electric vehicle manufacturer would see different savings. As an initial fuel cost comparison, however, the eGalllon comparison gives a unique and fair look at the fuel cost for owning a sustainable method of transport. It may not be the ultimate future, but the technology and savings are available NOW!
EIA’s Residential Energy Consumption Survey (RECS) gathers information through personal interviews with a nationwide sample of homes and energy suppliers. The just released 2009 survey resulted in energy consumption profiles for 16 individual states, including Colorado. Please find an pdf of findings from our state here.
Some interesting notes about Colorado:
- Colorado households consume an average of 103 million BTUs per year, 15% more than the national average.
- Average household energy costs and 23% less than the national average, primarily due to historically lower natural gas prices.
- Average electrical consumption per household is lower than most states, as Colorado residents do not commonly use electricity for Main space heating, and air-conditioning or water heating .
- Colorado homes are typically newer than homes in other parts of the country.
To access the nation-wide report, lease see the Residential Energy Consumption Survey
In this conversation with GreenBiz Group’s Joel Makower, retired U.S. Marine Corps Col. Mark “Puck” Mykleby details the opportunities identified in “A National Strategic Narrative,” a document he co-authored to craft a grand strategy for the country.
The three key areas of demand he discusses: walkable, smart-growth housing; regenerative and organic agriculture; and a productivity revolution focused on reducing resource intensity. “Sustainability is the central concept,” he says of all three.
From the Mountain Jackpot – The grand opening weekend for the new Visitor Center and Research Center at the Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument kicks off with small ribbon-cutting ceremony on Friday, June 14 at 10 a.m. The major activities continue during a park open house celebration Saturday and Sunday, June 15-16, with free park admission to all. The schedule will include behind-the-scenes tours of the paleontology center and the new building’s energy-saving technology features, a concert of songs from the Park Service’s new “Songs for Junior Rangers” album, special guests and other fun activities. The new visitor center is expected to boost monument visitation, which accounts for more than $3.2 million in visitor spending in the local tourism economy, according to the most recent National Park Service economic benefits study in 2011.The Monument is now open 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily. Summer hours, which begin June 1 and run through Labor Day, will be 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. daily.
You can learn more about the new state-of-the-art visitor center and research facility here
Source: L A Times.com Clean-energy jobs make up a small part of U.S. employment, but a new federal report shows they are growing much faster than other work, even healthcare.
The nation had about 3.4 million green energy jobs in 2011, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Tuesday in its second annual and final look at this emerging category of employment. (More on why it’s the last report later.)
In all, so-called green jobs accounted for just 2.6% of all employment that year, but a comparison with 2010 data shows that these jobs grew at four times the rate of all the others combined. Green employment jumped 4.9% in 2011 from the prior year. That compares with a gain of 1.2% for all jobs and 2.7% for restaurants, 1.7% for manufacturing and 1.8% for healthcare, which is often seen as the fastest-growing sector.
Green jobs of course cut across industries. By the BLS definition, they include work that is primarily involved in the production of green goods and services — for instance, renewable energy, pollution reduction
and recycling, and natural resources conservation. The agency also counts as green those jobs that involve education and training related to environmental compliance. Read all: http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-green-jobs20130319,0,2962980.story?track=rss
Colorado produced nearly 48 million barrels of oil in 2012, which ranked as the state’s second-highest level of oil production on record, according to a Denver Business Journal review of records from the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission. See the full story by Cathy Proctor: bizjournals.com/denver/news
And based on current trends, Colorado oil production could grow even more in years to come.
Energy companies have said they plan to spend billions in the next few years developing the Niobrara play.
Is this a good thing for Colorado’s sustainable energy future?
The Statewide Sustainability Roundtable was held in early November at the Denver Sturm College of Law. The report of that Roundtable is now available on the Alliance for Sustainable Colorado website. This page also contains videos of highlights from the conference as well as PowerPoint presentations from the event.
- The current state of energy in Colorado
- The future of energy Colorado – a 30 year vision
- Successful strategies and overcoming barriers
- Energy- water nexus
- Colorado’s sustainability dashboard
For a complete pdf of the report, click: StatewideRoundtableReport 2012
Teller Energy conducted a Community Energy Survey in May to assess the county’s energy use, and attitudes and practices regarding sustainability issues. Thank you to everyone who participated. Results from the survey have been tabulated and are presented here in graphical format. Please click on TESurvey Results to see them.
Approximately 12,000 residents of Teller were contacted by post and/or email. There were a total of 374 respondents, representing just over 3% of the population.
The first part of the survey concentrates on home building information such as location, construction, size, age, utility provider(s), and fuel use.
The second section asks about household participation and interest in sustainability practices including energy efficiency, water conservation, transportation, food and gardening choices, recycling habits, and renewable energy.
The final part of the survey is concerned with attitudes towards sustainability in such areas as payback time tolerance, willingness to spend more for green practices, and priorities.
The information contained in the results is informative for anyone in Teller and should be valuable to many organizations, agencies, utilities, and contractors. We tried to be comprehensive without making the survey too burdensome. If you took the survey, thank you! If you have any feedback, we’d love to hear from you. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As an overview, here are some notable findings:
- 84% of respondents have IREA as their electrical provider, which represents northern Teller
- Approximately 3/4 of residents use natural gas in their homes compared to 25% using propane
- Over half also use wood for heating, with 58% cutting their own
- 37% of homes employ passive solar
- The majority of homes are stick built, and between 1500 and 3000 sq. ft.
- Most folks spend between $2,000 and $3,000 on utility costs annually
- More people drive full size vehicles and trucks than compact cars
- While 99% of respondents turn off lights when not in use, less than half insulate hot water heaters and lines, use efficient central heating, or utilize an energy monitor
- Most respondents either use or would consider a high efficiency vehicle, with 63% willing to consider a natural gas vehicle if refill facilities were available
- The Woodland Park Wal-Mart is by far the most used method of recycling (Well, was. Now that drop-off is closed).
- There is a high degree of participation and interest in sustainable agriculture and food strategies in Teller County
- Though the current levels of renewable energy in Teller is low, most people plan to use or would consider these systems
- The vast majority either plan to use or want to learn more about utility incentives for energy efficiency or renewable energy upgrades
- Most folks are more tolerant of a longer payback period for renewable energy than energy efficiency upgrades
- Though government policy ranked near the lowest in priority out of 10 items for addressing sustainability, a full 78% felt local government should do more to promote sustainability
- Hands-on workshops were the preferred method of educational delivery methods for sustainable practices, followed closely by internet information