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Clean Energy Economy for the Region

April 2, 2018, Vol. 11, No. 2

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Buildings for a Sustainable Future

Save the date: Building(s) for a Sustainable Future

Symposium on May 18 features Ed Mazria, Founder of Architecture 2030

Given that nearly half of all energy in the U.S. is used by the building sector, it will take a major shift in how we design, build and operate buildings in order to meet clean energy targets.

Internationally recognized architect Ed Mazria, a global leader on reducing energy use in the buildings sector, will address this challenge as the featured speaker at Building(s) for a Sustainable Future, a symposium on May 18 in Carbondale.

Presented by CLEER, Garfield Clean Energy and CORE, the symposium will focus on how our region and state can accelerate progress on innovative, sustainable building practices.

Additional sponsors for the symposium are welcome. The sponsorship deadline is Friday, April 6.

Edward MazriaMazria is the founder of Architecture 2030, a think tank working to transform the building sector from being a major source of greenhouse gas emissions to being a key part of the solution.

In 2010, Mazria issued the groundbreaking 2030 Challenge, which calls for all new buildings, developments and major renovations to be carbon-neutral by 2030. It is in use by 462 AIA-member architecture firms practicing in the U.S.

Working with international climate policy leaders, Mazria drafted the “Roadmap to Zero Emissions” and the “2050 Imperative” for the United Nations and the OECD. This framework, endorsed by professional organizations representing more than 1.3 million architects in 124 countries, aims to phase out carbon emissions from all buildings by 2050.

The Building(s) for a Sustainable Future symposium gives the Colorado audience a chance to hear Ed Mazria’s compelling vision and plan for achieving net-zero in the buildings sector.

The symposium is for architects, builders, designers, real estate professionals, lenders, community leaders, and state and local government officials, offering a day filled with inspiring, information-packed presentations, dialogue and break-out sessions.

Building(s) for a Sustainable Future
8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Friday, May 18
100% solar-powered Third Street Center, Carbondale
A reception will follow at the Marble Distillery

Registration is open with early bird tickets at $45, including breakfast and lunch. Click here to register.

Other announced speakers include Shanti Pless, LEED AP, a senior research engineer with the buildings program at National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and Kelly Vaughn, buildings program marketing director for Rocky Mountain Institute.

Don’t miss this opportunity to hear Ed Mazria’s compelling vision and plan for achieving net-zero in the buildings sector.

Click here to register.

Additional sponsors are welcome. The sponsorship deadline is Friday, April 6. Learn more here.

Presented by

CLEER, Garfield Clean Energy and CORE

Sponsored by

Buildings for a Sustainable Future sponsors

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Garry Evenson of Battlement Mesa

Through the CARE program, Garry Evenson of Battlement Mesa received thorough air sealing of his home. "They sealed this house up like you can't believe," Evenson said. Photo by Kelley Cox

Seniors benefit from home energy improvements

Insulation, air sealing helps homes hold heat during cold winter months

Heather McGregor
Clean Energy Economy News

When winter winds blow and temperatures drop, seniors living in drafty homes feel the chill and pay the bills for the season’s high utility costs.

The CARE program helps income-qualified seniors beat the cold with free or discounted home energy efficiency upgrades such as insulation, air sealing, windows, refrigerators and other improvements.

“They sealed this house up like you can’t believe,” said Garry Evenson, 81, of Battlement Mesa, describing work done by Building Performance Contractors. “They did a fantastic job, and I really appreciate it.”

In Rifle, a furnace tune-up and air sealing reduced Bessie Burr’s utility bill by $20 a month.

Bessie Burr

Bessie Burr of Rifle received a furnace tune-up, a programmable thermostat (below) and air sealing throughout her home. "They took care of the cracks around all of my windows," Burr said. The upgrades reduced her home energy bill by $20 a month.
Photos by Kelley Cox

Bessie Burr

“They took care of all the cracks around my windows,” said Burr, 85, and she noticed a big difference during the heat of summer. “I didn't even turn on my air conditioning last summer.”

CARE is a regional program of Energy Outreach Colorado that originated in Garfield County in 2015. Garfield Clean Energy and CLEER deliver CARE services locally, with additional funding from Xcel Energy, Holy Cross Energy, Black Hills Energy, Glenwood Springs Electric and the Town of Carbondale.

“When we can help people reduce their energy bills, their cost of living becomes more affordable,” said Tom Jankovsky, Garfield County’s board member for Garfield Clean Energy. “That’s especially important for seniors living on a fixed income.”

CARE helps income-qualified families of all ages, but it’s evident that seniors have greater needs. Of the 127 households from Parachute to Carbondale helped by CLEER since the program launched in 2015, 32 are senior households.

CLEER estimates these 32 senior households are saving $18,460 per year with lower electric and natural gas bills, an average of $575 per household.

CLEER Energy Coaches Maisa Metcalf and Brandon Jones first make a free home visit, usually installing several LED light bulbs and a low-flow showerhead, and putting a tight insulating wrap on the water heater. They note other needed improvements, and arrange for professional contractors to do those jobs.

“They were very polite and concerned about my house,” said Burr. “They went into every room.”

Garry Evenson

Garry Evenson of Battlement Mesa received a tight, insulating wrapping on his hot water heater, along with air sealing, LED light bulbs, furnace tune-up and a low-flow showerhead. Photo by Kelley Cox

The coaches also check for health and safety problems. Over the years, the CARE program has repaired improperly venting furnaces, unsafe entryways and broken windows.

At most homes, however, the focus is on energy efficiency improvements, which also make a home more durable and comfortable.

Air sealing and insulation added in January 2017 has made a difference at Jim and Judy Lemon’s home on Morrisania Mesa.

“We do notice the house does not fluctuate in temperature near what it used to. We set the thermostat for 72 and it maintains. Before, it would cool down real fast,” said Jim Lemon, 72. “It’s a lot warmer during the cold season, and not quite so hot in the summer.”

In Silt, Laura Goodwin, 70, had two stubborn windows that wouldn’t close completely. Through CARE, Woodpecker Workshop repaired the windows so they operate properly and keep out the drafts.

Goodwin was also able to buy a new energy efficient refrigerator at a 50 percent discount. “There were some things wrong with the old fridge, so I really appreciated that,” she said.

"When you get the whole enchilada, it’s more noticeable. It was an instant change."
-- Patricia Porter, New Castle

“When we can help people reduce their energy bills, their cost of living becomes more affordable. That’s especially important for seniors living on a fixed income.”
-- Tom Jankovsky, Garfield County’s board member for Garfield Clean Energy


North of New Castle, where Patricia and Wendell “Kim” Porter rely on a woodstove for heat, CARE provided air sealing, insulation and four new basement windows.

“The house does not take as long to heat up, and it stays warm longer. When we get up in the morning, it’s not freezing cold,” said Patricia Porter, 68. The old windows used to frost up at night, but the new ones stay clear and dry, she noted.

“We wouldn’t have been able to do it on our own,” Porter said, and she appreciated getting several projects done at one time. “When you get the whole enchilada, it’s more noticeable. It was an instant change.”

For 2018, CLEER received another grant from EOC, and Garfield Clean Energy has committed matching funds, making it possible for the CARE program to serve more Garfield County seniors and income-qualified families of all ages.

For a single person, the qualifying income is at or less than $39,040 per year. For couples, it’s $44,640. Homeowners and renters are eligible.

To find out more information and how to apply, visit the CARE page on the Garfield Clean Energy website, or contact CLEER at (970) 704-9200 or

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Colorado State Capitol Building

Legislators call for 80 percent cut in GHG emissions by 2050, seek climate resiliency

2018 session considers 13 bills related to clean energy; six are dead

Heather McGregor
Clean Energy Economy News

A pair of bills introduced in the state House in mid-March set new goals for reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and call on state and local government to prepare for climate change. They are among six bills in play at the Colorado Legislature related to clean energy subjects.

House Bill 1274 calls for an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions statewide by 2050, compared to 2005 levels. The bill has passed one House committee and awaits a House floor vote. This comes after a Senate committee killed a bill calling on state government to collect greenhouse gas emissions data.

House Bill 1297 sets an interim goal for cutting emissions, calling for a 26 percent reduction by 2025, and sets a goal for electric power plants to cut carbon emissions 30 percent by 2030 over 2012 levels.

The bill also requires the Colorado Resiliency and Recovery Office to assess the economic and environmental impacts of climate change under various scenarios and support locally-led climate resilience initiatives.

The first clean energy bill to win approval of both houses, Senate Bill 9, was signed March 22 by Gov. John Hickenlooper. The bill gives electric utility customers the right to install electric storage batteries and connect them to the utility grid.

In other action, state Rep. Kevin Priola, R-Adams County, made a second run at a bill allowing Xcel Energy and Black Hills Energy to spread the costs of investments in electric vehicle charging and compressed natural gas fueling stations across their whole ratepayer base. Introduced March 19, the bill was killed in its first hearing, in the Senate Transportation Committee. A similar bill that Priola introduced in 2017 also failed to win legislative approval.

Legislators have killed five other clean energy bills, including a proposal that would have required builders to offer electric vehicle charging ports as an option in new homes.

Here is a summary of clean energy bills in the 2018 legislative session. To track regular updates on clean energy bills, visit Garfield Clean Energy’s legislative tracker web page.

Bill passed - 1

SB 009 Allow electric utility customers to install energy storage equipment
Introduced Jan. 10, passed by the Senate Feb. 8, passed by the House March 5, signed by Gov. Hickenlooper March 22

Declares that consumers of electricity have a right to install, interconnect and use electricity storage systems (batteries) on their property, and directs the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to adopt rules governing the installation, interconnection, and use of customer-sited distributed electricity storage systems.

Bills in play - 6

SB 003 Colorado Energy Office
Introduced Jan. 10, passed Senate Feb. 22, awaiting action in House Transportation and Energy Committee

Adds nuclear and hydroelectric power to CEO’s portfolio, broadens CEO’s outreach to include all energy sources and provides four years of funding for the agency.

HB 1274 Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2050
Introduced March 7, passed House Transportation and Energy March 21, awaiting House floor vote

Requires that by 2050, statewide greenhouse gas emissions to be reduced by at least 80% of the levels of greenhouse gas emissions that existed in the year 2005.

HB 1297 Climate change preparedness and resiliency
Introduced March 16, passed House Transportation and Energy March 21, awaiting action in House Appropriations

Adopts two greenhouse gas emission reduction goals: reducing greenhouse gas emissions statewide 26% by 2025 when compared with 2005 levels, and reducing carbon emissions from electric power plants 25% by 2025 and by 30% by 2030 over 2012 levels.

The bill also requires the Colorado Resiliency and Recovery Office (within the Colorado Department of Local Affairs) to assess the economic and environmental impacts of climate change under various scenarios, update the Colorado resiliency framework, and support locally-led climate resilience initiatives.

HB 1270 Public Utilities Commission evaluation of energy storage systems
Introduced March 6, awaiting House floor vote

Directs the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to establish mechanisms for the procurement of energy storage systems by investor-owned electric utilities, based on an analysis of costs and benefits as well as factors such as grid reliability and a reduction in the need for additional peak generation or transmission capacity.

SB 047 Repeal tax credits for innovative vehicles
Introduced Jan. 10, passed Senate March 23, awaiting action in House Transportation and Energy Committee

Repeals the state income tax credits for innovative motor vehicles and innovative trucks for purchase and leases effective Jan. 1, 2019. Currently the tax credits are scheduled to expire in 2021. A similar bill introduced in 2017 failed to win legislative approval.

SB 144 Regulation of bicycles approaching intersections
Introduced Jan. 29, passed the Senate Feb. 21, awaiting action in House Transportation and Energy Committee

Allows local governments to adopt local rules governing cycling through intersections, specifically allowing cyclists to roll through stop signs after slowing down, and allowing cyclists to proceed through a red light after stopping to look for traffic.

Bills “postponed indefinitely” - 6

SB 064 Require 100% renewable energy by 2035
Introduced Jan. 12, PI’d Feb. 1 by Senate Agriculture, Natural Resources & Energy Committee

Would have updated the renewable energy standard to require that all electric utilities, including rural electric co-ops and municipal utilities, derive their energy from 100% renewable sources by 2035.

SB 117 Collect long-term climate change data
Introduced Jan. 29, PI’d Feb. 13 by Senate State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee

Would have required the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to collect and report on greenhouse gas emissions data.

HB 1080 Climate Leadership Awards program
Introduced Jan. 17, PI’d Feb. 7 by House Natural; Resources & Environment Committee

Would have required a state climate change officer to develop a climate leadership awards program to recognize organizations and individuals that provide leadership in response to climate change.

HB 1085 Health effects of industrial wind turbines
Introduced Jan. 18, PI’d Feb. 8 by House Transportation and Energy Committee

Would have required the Department of Public Health and Environment to research the health effects of noise and stray voltage from wind energy turbines on humans and animals.

HB 1107 Prewire residence for electric vehicle charging port
Introduced Jan. 18, passed House Feb. 14, PI’d March 20 by Senate Transportation and Energy Committee

Would have required builders of new residences to offer buyers the option to accommodate electric vehicle charging systems.

SB 216 Alternative fuel vehicle charging by public utilities
Introduced March 19, PI’d March 27 by Senate Transportation and Energy Committee

Would have allowed Xcel Energy and Black Hills Energy to invest in charging ports for electric vehicles (EVs) and fueling stations for CNG vehicles, as well as transmission and delivery infrastructure upgrades so the electric and natural gas grids can handle the increased load.

The point of the bill was to allow these investor-owned utilities to spread the costs of investments across their whole ratepayer base. A similar bill introduced in 2017 also failed to win legislative approval.

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Volkswagen settlement brings $68 M to Colorado
for clean transportation

Emissions cheating violations result in giant windfall
for EV, CNG vehicles and fueling

Colorado officials have finalized a plan for distributing $68.7 million in funding for use in the state from the nationwide Clean Air Act settlement with Volkswagen Group of America.

The nationwide settlement ordered Volkswagen to pay more than $2.9 billion after the company admitted to cheating on federal vehicle emissions tests to hide excess air pollution in 580,000 vehicles.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment led the effort to develop a Beneficiary Mitigation Plan, which was signed March 22 by Gov. John Hickenlooper.

Under the plan, funds will be divided into categories for vehicle replacements, electric vehicle charging and emission-cutting upgrades to diesel engines. The funds will be distributed through various existing grant programs such as ALT Fuels Colorado, Charge Ahead Colorado, and the Diesel Emissions Reduction Act.

The application processes for the funds are being developed now, and funds are expected to be available by early summer 2018.

The division of funds for Colorado is:

  • $18 million (26%) to replace 400 to 450 trucks, school buses, shuttle buses, railroad freight switchers, airport ground vehicles and heavy-duty forklifts with CNG, electric or propane vehicles.
  • $18 million (26%) to replace transit buses with CNG or electric vehicles, and install electric bus charging equipment.
  • $10.3 million (15%) to install public electric vehicle charging, including a statewide network of EV fast-charge stations.
  • $5 million (7%) for upgrades to reduce emissions from diesel-filed vehicles and diesel-powered engines.
  • $11.7 million (17%) held back as flexible funds that can be added to program areas where demand is greatest.
  • $5.7 million (9%) for administrative costs to manage and distribute the funds.

Download the full Beneficiary Mitigation Plan here (22 pages, 520 KB)

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Colorado Energy Office launches RENU, statewide residential energy loan

Loans offered from $500 to $35,000 for qualified energy upgrades

Heatheryn Higgins
Colorado Energy Office News

The Colorado Energy Office has launched the Colorado Residential Energy Upgrade (RENU) Loan, a statewide residential program aimed at financing energy efficiency and renewable energy projects on existing homes.

AC repairmanThe RENU Loan program, a partnership between the Colorado Energy Office (CEO) and Boulder-based Elevations Credit Union, offers long-term, low-interest rate loans to homeowners across Colorado seeking to improve the efficiency and comfort of their homes.

As program sponsor, CEO authorizes contractors to participate in the Colorado RENU Loan program. Authorized RENU contractors then work directly with homeowners to install eligible energy upgrades, including HVAC systems, insulation and air sealing, windows, lighting, appliances and solar PV.

Elevations Credit Union provides the financing for these projects, with loans ranging from $500 to $35,000 for terms of three to 15 years. Colorado RENU Loans can be used to finance 100 percent of project costs, resulting in no out-of-pocket expenses for a homeowner.

"The residential market presents a significant opportunity to conserve energy, and the Colorado RENU Loan offers a financial tool to help homeowners achieve utility savings and increase the comfort of their homes," said Jeffrey King, program manager at CEO. "We're excited to be bringing this loan offering to homeowners across Colorado."

Elevations Credit Union was selected as the anchor lender for the Colorado RENU Loan program based on its residential energy lending experience in Denver, Boulder and Fort Collins.

"As a member-owned, locally focused financial services cooperative, Elevations is committed to the long-term sustainability of Colorado's communities," said Ray Lindley, chief lending officer for Elevations Credit Union. "The Colorado RENU Loan program allows us to better achieve that goal by extending the ability to offer our energy lending services throughout the entire state."

The Colorado RENU Loan program also offers contractors an opportunity to reach new customers and expand their businesses.

"By becoming an authorized RENU contractor, we are now able to offer our customers an easy-to-use, low-interest financing option to install energy-saving upgrades," said Ryan Donnell, president of NetZero Insulation, one of the first contractors to join the program.

The Colorado RENU Loan program currently has more than 30 authorized contractors servicing more than half of the state's counties. Of the 30, 12 contractors serve Western Slope communities.

Contractors interested in participating in the program can visit to learn about the program and upcoming trainings.

Homeowners looking to finance energy upgrades for their homes can contact a local, authorized Colorado RENU Loan contractor by visiting the online contractor list.

For more information about the Colorado RENU Loan program,
contact Jeffrey King at (303) 866-2259 or

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Don’t waste heat. Recycle it into power.

Colorado Energy Office reaches out
to oil and gas industry to generate clean energy

Susan Brodie
Heat is Power Association

The Colorado Energy Office (CEO) is reaching out to the oil and gas industry about the potential for using waste heat to generate electricity without emissions.

CEO is working with the Heat is Power Association to inform leaders in the industry about the energy potential, and with the U.S. Department of Energy’s Southwest Combined Heat and Power Technical Assistance Partnership to offer free evaluations for potential projects.

Recycled energy — also known as waste heat to power — is a form of clean energy that uses leftover heat from industrial processes to generate electricity with no additional fuel, combustion or emissions. The definition of recycled energy excludes power generated from waste heat produced by systems whose primary purpose is the generation of electricity.

Recycled EnergyRecycled energy systems capture heat from exhaust stacks or pipes, which would otherwise be lost to the atmosphere, and convert it into electricity.

The industrial sector accounts for 30 percent of U.S. energy consumption, and 20 to 30 percent of that energy is lost as waste heat. If captured, this energy would be worth $20 billion to $60 billion per year.

A report by the Colorado Energy Office estimates there are more than 50 sites in Colorado where recycled energy projects are economically feasible, with the potential to generate more than 100 megawatts of clean energy.

Nearly 40 of these potential sites are oil and gas facilities. Waste heat can be captured and turned into an asset from flares, produced water at wellheads, engines at compressor stations, and process heat at refinery and gas processing operations.

Generating power from waste heat can improve electric service reliability onsite, save facility owners money by offsetting the cost of purchased fuel and electricity, provide power to remote locations, and reduce a company’s carbon footprint and emissions.

Recycled energy is also an eligible energy resource that can help utilities meet Colorado’s renewable energy standard goals.

Does your industrial operation have recycled energy opportunities? Is process heat a big chunk of your business costs? Does your company run compressors and engines, or is it flaring waste gas? Anywhere waste heat exhausts to the atmosphere is a missed opportunity.

Learn more about opportunities to generate power from waste heat for your company’s use or for sale to utilities.

Read the two-page fact sheet, Recycled Energy in the Oil and Gas Industry.

Visit the recycled energy page on the Colorado Energy Office website.

Contact Susan Brodie at the Heat is Power Association:

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Alpine Bank

Holy Cross Energy

Garfield Clean Energy

Many thanks to Alpine Bank,
Holy Cross Energy,
Garfield Clean Energy
and CLEER contributors.

Your support makes this work possible.

In this issue

Save the date: Building(s) for a Sustainable Future, May 18

Seniors benefit from home energy improvements

Legislators call for 80 percent cut in emissions, seek climate resiliency

Volkswagen settlement brings $68 M to Colorado for EV, CNG vehicles and fueling

Colorado Energy Office launches statewide residential energy loan

Don’t waste heat. Recycle it into power


Changemakers Challenge brings Earth Guardians leader to valley high schools

Webinar: Energy Recovery Hydropower, 4/19

Waste Diversion Workshop, 4/24

Battle on the Mesa 5K, fun run & bicycle hill climb, 4/28


Submit your news and events to
Clean Energy Economy News

Clean Energy Economy News accepts news, events and training information related to clean energy and sustainability for monthly publication. Send your items to Editor Heather McGregor at


Changemakers Challenge brings Earth Guardians leader to valley high schools

Effort includes education through social media, offers college scholarship

Changemakers Challenge launches next week with three high school assemblies featuring Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, 17, youth director for Earth Guardians.

We Rise coverMartinez is an indigenous climate activist, author and hip-hop artist who has carried his message of climate action to the United Nations, as a TED Talk and on The Daily Show. His newly published book is We Rise: The Earth Guardians Guide to Building a Movement that Restores the Planet.

He will speak at assemblies at Glenwood Springs and Roaring Fork high schools on April 12 and at Aspen High School on April 13.

The Changemakers Challenge will then use social media to offer information about energy, sponsor a contest and, in May, award a scholarship.

The challenge is presented by CORE, the City of Aspen, Aspen Skiing Co. Environment Foundation and CLEER.

Read more about the Changemakers Challenge here.

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Energy Recovery Hydropower

Energy Recovery Hydropower

New state and federal policies make small hydropower economical

The Colorado Energy Office hosts a free introductory webinar on energy recovery hydropower. This new type of hydropower development is economically feasible thanks to significant recent changes in federal and state policy.

The one-hour webinar is set for Thursday, April 19, at 11 a.m.

The webinar provides an overview of Colorado resources available to help support hydropower project development:

  • Free site assessments
  • Grants to support project feasibility and engineering
  • Low-interest loans that can provide 100% of project construction costs.

The webinar will also highlight recently completed projects.

To register, contact Samantha Reifer at the Colorado Energy Office, or (303) 866-2418.

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Waste Diversion Workshop

Waste Diversion Workshop explains recycling, composting

Learn how your family or company can send less waste to the landfill and divert more to composting and recycling the upcoming Waste Diversion Workshop.

It’s set for 5:30 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, April 24, at the Third Street Center, 520 S. Third St., in Carbondale. The workshop is free and refreshments will be served.

Alyssa Reindel, a zero waste guide with EverGreen ZeroWaste of Carbondale, will explain how households and businesses can reduce, reuse, recycle and compost. Reindel will also talk about the role landfill waste plays in climate change.

“Decomposing waste produces methane, a powerful greenhouse gas. Every barrel of waste we can divert to composting or recycling prevents methane from forming,” Reindel said.

Reindel’s presentation will cover how waste is handled at a recycling facility, guidelines for properly separating waste for recycling and composting, and how to get started with backyard composting.

She will also share tips on how to avoid waste in the first place through careful purchasing of products and packaging, along with ideas for reusing and repairing things.

‘Whenever I present, people always have a lot of questions. We’ll allow plenty of time for discussion,” Reindel said. “I’d like people to walk away from the workshop more knowledgeable and empowered.”

The Waste Diversion Workshop is presented by CLEER, Garfield Clean Energy and the Town of Carbondale.

RSVP to or 704-9200.

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Battle On The Mesa

Battle on the Mesa combines 5K, fun run, bicycle hill climb

Free barbeque lunch
follows race events

The Parachute-Battlement Mesa Trail Group opens the 2018 race season with a morning of race events for runners and cyclists on Saturday, April 28. Everyone from the region is invited to participate.

5K Run or Walk, starting at 9 a.m.

3K Family Fun Run / Walk starting at 10:15 a.m.

Footrace events begin at Bea Underwood Elementary, 741 Tamarisk Trail, Battlement Mesa.

Bicycle Hill Climb Timed Trial starting at 11 a.m. The 2-mile ride on paved roads climbs 500 feet in elevation. Staging for the Hill Climb is at 10:30 a.m. at Grand Valley Recreation Center, 398 Arroyo Dr., Battlement Mesa.

A free barbeque lunch for all participants will be held following the race events at the Grand Valley Recreation Center

Registration is $15 for adults, $10 for children 10 and younger, and $40 for families. Those who register by April 1 will receive a free t-shirt.

Register in advance here.

Registration on the day of the event starts at 8 a.m. at Bea Underwood Elementary, 741 Tamarisk Trail, Battlement Mesa.

Battle on the Mesa is sponsored by Alpine Bank, Colorado Trust, Mohrlang Realty, Keller Williams Real Estate, Battlement Mesa Service Association, Kiwanis Properties, RHP, Ursa and Battlement Mesa Co.

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Solar farm west of Silt gets Garfield County’s approval

Glenwood Springs Post Independent
March 27, 2018

Seeking a land-use change west of Silt, Microgrid Energy, a Denver-based company with commercial and industrial solar energy projects throughout the U.S., presented the Peregrine Solar Energy System to the Garfield County commissioners on March 26. The zoning change was approved unanimously 3-0.

Microgrid plans to turn approximately six acres on an overall tract of nearly 42 acres into a one-megawatt solar facility serving Xcel Energy customers in the county.

Silt Planning and Zoning Commission Chairwoman Meredith Robinson said the town believes that "this type of energy production can only benefit the region," and added that the town will be purchasing power from Microgrid.


Colorado added 785 solar jobs in 2017

The Denver Post, March 29, 2018

Solar companies in Colorado added 785 jobs last year, increasing the number of solar jobs in the state from 6,004 in 2016 to 6,789, a 13 percent gain.

Colorado bucked the national trend as nationwide, solar companies shed nearly 10,000 jobs in 2017. Across the country, solar employment declined 3.8 percent from 260,077 jobs in 2016 to 250,271 in 2017.

Most of the nationwide decline was due to the loss of nearly 14,000 solar jobs in California. California still leads the U.S. in solar jobs with 86,414 employed.


Climate Leadership Conference

News coverage and video from the Climate Leadership Conference in Denver

You should hear what these two rock stars of climate change have to say

Mountain Town News, March 14, 2018

Gina  McCarthy and Katharine Hayhoe both can hold a stage like few others. McCarthy, the former administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, brims with Boston sass, her arms slicing the air as her words pound out her arguments.

“The simple fact of the matter is that these two actions by the (Trump) administration—to pull out of the Paris agreement and also to try to repeal the Clean Power Plan—use a fundamentally flawed strategy,” McCarthy said during a recent speech at the Climate Leadership Conference in Denver. “It is fundamentally a misread of the United States of America. It is a misread of what we care about. … They have made a serious error of judgment.”

Hayhoe, who is both an atmospheric scientist and an associate professor of political science at Texas Tech, lays out her arguments with less overt fire. But she, too, dazzles, her talking points sequenced like dominoes, one tripping over into the next. She employs powerful analogies.


Geothermal: Tax breaks and the Google startup bringing Earth's heat into homes

InsideClimate News, Feb. 12, 2018

Underground, below the frost line, the Earth is consistently around 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Geothermal heat pumps use that temperature to keep buildings comfortable by circulating fluid through a set of pipes that runs through the earth and then connects with a heat pump.

The result is much more efficient heating and cooling with clean energy than commercial air conditioning and heating systems—and much lower emissions.


Inkjet printed solar cells

Inkjet-printed perovskite solar cells with efficiency above 16 percent. Photo by Maikel van Hest, National Renewable Energy Laboratory

NREL R&D: Tandem solar panels boost production capacity

Scientists are developing alternatives to standard silicon solar panels that are 50 percent more efficient than the today’s silicon photovoltaic (PV) solar panel.


EIA energy generation chart

Electricity generation from fossil fuels declined in 2017 as renewable generation rose

Today in Energy, March 20, 2018

According to EIA’s Electric Power Monthly report on nationwide electric generation in 2017, total U.S. net electricity generation fell by 1.5% from 2016 to 2017, due to lower electricity demand.

Natural gas-fueled electricity generation fell by 7.7% and coal-fueled generation fell by 2.5%, as generation from renewable fuels, particularly hydro, wind, and solar, increased from 2016 levels.


An Oregon Mill Town Learns to Love Facebook and Apple

New York Times, March 6, 2018

Once-struggling Prineville has become a factor in turning central Oregon into a dynamic region of demographic and economic transition with the continued construction of large data centers for Facebook and Apple.

Avangrid Renewables just opened one of Oregon's largest solar-generating stations outside Prineville, a $120 million, 56-megawatt plant to supply clean energy to Apple.


South Lake Tahoe looks to ban polystyrene containers

Mountain Town News, Feb. 10, 2018

Should polystyrene products be banned? A growing number of local jurisdictions in coastal states have taken a hard line against polystyrene, including Styrofoam and other foam varieties. Now, mountain towns are starting to do so, too.


Wind turbine - NREL

Technological advancements are making wind turbines more efficient and blades more aerodynamic. Photo by Dennis Schroeder/NREL

Aging Wind Farms Are Repowering with Longer Blades, More Efficient Turbines

InsideClimate News, March 28, 2018

Old wind farms that have towered over the same fields for more than a decade may be generating more power now than ever before.

As America's biggest wind farms age, their owners are starting to "repower" them with more efficient turbines, new electronics and longer, lighter blades that can sweep more wind with each rotation. The result is a thriving new industry, new jobs and more renewable energy.


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