February 2018 | Vol. 11, No. 1
In this issue:
Garfield Clean Energy wins statewide award
Free workshops explain risks of radon
Built-in efficiency pays off for new county building
Glenwood Springs Electric resumes solar PV rebates
Legislators start to redefine Colorado Energy Office
Hickenlooper announces EV plan for state’s highways
Hotchkiss organic orchard taps Colorado C-PACE
Four tips to improve EV battery range in winter
Winter Bike to Work Day in the Roaring Fork Valley
Recent climate and energy news
Garfield Clean Energy wins statewide clean energy leadership award
Clean Energy Economy News
Garfield Clean Energy was one of eight community efforts recognized Jan. 31 at the Colorado Communities Symposium for its clean energy leadership.
The three-day symposium in Aurora, hosted by the Compact of Colorado Communities and the State of Colorado, brought 400 elected officials and community leaders from across Colorado to discuss climate change preparedness and clean energy development.
Free workshops explain risks of radon, how to make homes safe
Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer in non-smokers and is estimated to cause 20,000 lung cancer deaths each year in the U.S. In Garfield County, 40 percent of homes have tested high for radon.
Radon exposure is a cancer risk that we can do something about. Two free workshops are being held in Rifle and Carbondale to inform residents about radon testing and how to make your home safe.
Built-in energy efficiency pays off for new Garfield County Administration Building
By Erin Mathe, Xcel Partners in Energy
Hundred-year old historic buildings are often an architectural treasure, but with age they become inefficient and in need of significant renovations, as was the case with the Garfield County Henry Building in downtown Rifle.
Rather than undertake an expensive and complicated renovation, Garfield County administrators decided it was more prudent to consolidate all county operations and departments and house them together in a new structure.
Glenwood Springs Electric resumes solar rebates
Glenwood Springs Electric has resumed offering rebates for customers to install on-site solar electric arrays, with funding for up to 12 residential systems and three commercial systems.
“We are pleased to once again offer the popular solar rebates to our customers,” said Glenwood Springs City Manager Debra Figueroa. “The rebates will help more of our customers install solar energy systems and increase the renewable energy in our system.”
Legislators start early to redefine and fund Colorado Energy Office
Colorado legislators continue to debate the framework for the Colorado Energy Office after failing to fund the agency in the 2017 session. New legislation sponsored by state Sen Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction, would redefine and fund the office.
Scott’s bill would expand the agency’s mission to include nuclear and hydroelectric power, broaden CEO’s outreach to include all energy sources, and provide four years of funding for the agency.
Gov. Hickenlooper announces plan to support electric vehicles on state’s highways
On Jan. 24, Gov. John Hickenlooper announced the release of the Colorado Electric Vehicle (EV) Plan, delivering on a directive set forth in his July 2017 executive order, “Supporting Colorado’s Clean Energy Transition.”
“The Colorado EV Plan serves as a roadmap to build out a fast-charging network, giving Coloradans the ability to travel anywhere in the state in an EV,” said Governor John Hickenlooper. “The plan includes a set of goals and strategies that ensure Colorado continues leading in adoption of EVs and leverages the economic development and tourism benefits.”
Hotchkiss organic orchard taps Colorado C-PACE for renewable energy system
By Heatheryn Higgins, Colorado Energy Office News
On Feb. 8, Colorado Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-PACE), which helps building owners and developers finance energy efficiency measures, announced the state’s first agricultural project funded through the program.
Ela Family Farms, a Hotchkiss-based certified organic orchard, will use C-PACE financing to install a new solar photovoltaic (PV) system at its warehouse. Along with producing renewable energy, the installment is projected to save the fourth-generation orchard more than $113,000 in energy costs over the system’s lifetime.
Four tips to improve electric vehicle battery range this winter
News from the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
Electric vehicle (EV) batteries charge by moving ions through a liquid electrolyte. As the temperatures outside drop, the electrolyte in lithium ion EV batteries thickens and it becomes more difficult for ions to move through (much like the challenge of walking through snow versus dry pavement). This increased resistance results in less EV battery range as more energy is needed for each ion to move.
Fortunately, there are things you can do to stay warm and improve your EV range. Below are four tips to get the most out of your EV battery this winter.
Winter Bike to Work Day
Winter Bike to Work and Bike to School Day events were held in Glenwood Springs, Carbondale and Aspen on Feb. 9. They were part of International Winter Bike to Work Day, a global campaign now in its sixth year.
Drew Huemmler with Defiant Pack, left, shows how to carry skis on a bike using Defiant’s Ski Carry bag.
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RECENT CLIMATE & ENERGY NEWS
Carbondale begins study of hydroelectric at Nettle Creek water plant
Glenwood Springs Post Independent | December 13, 2017
Carbondale trustees approved a contract in December for a feasibility study for a project to install a hydroelectric turbine at the municipal water plant, a turbine that could possibly produce all the electricity the plant requires.
Summit School District joins effort to get county’s biggest energy users to go green
Summit Daily News | Jan. 19, 2018
Summit School District is one of the largest consumers of energy in the county. In an effort to further its goals of reducing carbon emissions and going green, the school district board has signed on to the Summit Climate Action Collaborative.
Tax Overhaul Preserves Critical Credits for Wind, Solar and Electric Vehicles
Inside Climate News | Dec. 22, 2017
The booming renewable energy industry breathed a wary sigh of relief as Congress voted in December on a sweeping tax bill that preserves critical tax credits for wind energy, solar power and electric vehicles.
New Tax Bill Offers Unexpected Benefits to Commercial Solar Installations
GreenTech Media | Jan. 3, 2018
The tax plan passed by Congress in December introduced two provisions favorable for commercial solar installations: a reduction in the corporate tax rate and the expansion of depreciation allowances.
Nearly half of utility-scale capacity installed in 2017 came from renewables
TODAY IN ENERGY | Jan. 10, 2018
Once final data are in, EIA expects about 25 gigawatts (GW) of new utility-scale electric generating capacity to have been added to the power grid during 2017, nearly half of which use renewable technologies, especially wind and solar.
There Is Nothing Virtual About Bitcoin’s Energy Appetite
New York Times | Jan. 21, 2018
The computer power needed to create each digital token consumes at least as much electricity as the average American household burns through in two years, according to figures from Morgan Stanley and Alex de Vries, an economist who tracks energy use in the industry.