Tag Archives: climate

People’s Climate March on Denver: Get Involved Today

Tell our elected officials that the environment matters! April 29th, 2017 is the 100th day of President Donald Trump’s administration.  Clean Energy Action is marking the day by joining with the People’s Climate of Colorado and countless other groups in a huge demonstration to highlight our recognition that climate change is real, that it impacts all of us, and that we are committed to solving it.

The PCM in Denver, along with other sister city marches, is happening simultaneously to the People’s Climate March in Washington. Like the Women’s March, the PCM will be a national show of resistance, resolve, and unity.

There are many ways to show your support for our planet:

  • Planning to attend? RSVP on Facebook, sign up on Action Network,  and tell your friends and family.
  • Want to get more involved? Take this survey in order to register to be trained as an PCM Marshal, or check out these planning meetings in Denver and Boulder, and help us make sure the event is a great success!
  • The Climate March also needs financial support. Make a donation or purchase one of these awesome T-shirts, and put your dollars to work in defense of our environment.
  • You can also be a #climatehero and help spread the word on Facebook and twitter:  #peoplesclimatemarch #denverclimatemarch

Hope to see you there!

CEA Releases Annual Report, Celebrates a Decade of Speaking Truth to Power

The end of 2015 represents an important milestone for Clean Energy Action. Founded in 2005 to oppose the construction of Colorado’s last coal-fired power plant, Comanche 3, we are proud of the organization that has evolved over a decade of powerful action and catalytic research on behalf of our climate.

As we celebrate a decade of speaking truth to power, this report focuses on CEA’s most significant achievements with an emphasis on the last two years.

View the Report Now

Even as we pause to reflect on these accomplishments, we cannot ignore the growing urgency of the climate crisis nor can we forget the widespread damage our changing climate has already inflicted.

While we have been able to accomplish a great deal with very little thus far, even greater change is needed. We need to continue to grow our revenue and expand our appeal in order to hire new staff, deepen our research and multiply our impact. We look to you for continued and generous support – together we can accelerate the pace of change in this next, most pivotal decade.

View the Report Here

Community Energy Fair: Speaker Lineup Announced!

2015 Community Energy Fair ̶ Picnic Table Talks

Saturday June 20, 2015 

10 am- 4 pm 

Join the event on Facebook!

We’re excited to announce our speaker lineup for the 2015 Community Energy Fair! Picnic Table Talks will be about 15-20 minutes with time for Question and Answer afterwards.

10:30 am—Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) Part I ̶ Dan MacDonald

CCL is a non-partisan organization that trains everyday citizens to help build the political will for a livable world by reflecting the true cost of carbon-based fuels via a revenue neutral carbon fee that is returned as a household dividend. Learn how you can help.

11 am—Triumph of the Sun! ̶ Hunter Lovins, Natural Capitalism Solutions

Hunter Lovins, an attorney, teacher and world-famous leader in the sustainability and clean energy movements, brings good news from around the world and shows us why what Boulder is doing is important.

12 pm—Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL) Part II ̶ Tim Bailey and Tim Wagner

CCL is a national organization that exists to empower citizens to help our country make policies that will address Climate Change. CCL is rapidly gaining momentum across the US. CCL works to shift us off carbon-based fuels and save us money all at the same time.

12:30 pm—How One Citizen Helped Move the Climate Conversation ̶ Julie Zahniser

When Julie Zahniser, a speech pathologist, parent and outdoor enthusiast, wanted to help address climate change issues, she found opportunities right here in Boulder through Clean Energy Action and Boulder’s clean energy campaigns. You can help, too!

1 pm—The Science of Climate Change ̶ Why It is Serious and What We Can Do About It—Chuck Kutscher, PhD

Chuck Kutscher is a dynamic speaker who has been leading many of the National Renewable Energy Lab’s most effective programs for over 30 years and has been Chair of the American Solar Energy Society. Don’t miss Chuck’s inspiring presentation!

2 pm—100% Renewable Energy ̶ Yes We Can!  Ken Regelson, EnergyShouldBe.org

Ken Regelson has helped move energy policy in Colorado for the last decade. He is an electrical engineer, founder of EnergyShouldBe.org and an expert on the real potential of transitioning to Renewable Energy. His talks always have a fun surprise element.

3 pm—Standing Up for Solar Rights in Colorado—Jessica Scott, Vote Solar

Jessica Scott moved from serving Denver to working in Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada and Arizona to make solar a mainstream energy resource. Jessica is an advocate for Vote Solar whose mission says, “The sun got up this morning ready to help, did you?”

3:30 pm—The US Coal Industry is in Dire Straits and I’m Terrified—Huh?? Leslie Glustrom, ̶Clean Energy Action

Co-founder of Clean Energy Action, Leslie Glustrom is one of the nation’s coal industry experts. She has worked tirelessly to build Beyond Coal campaigns in Colorado and the US, but now she is concerned about the rapid US coal industry demise! Come learn why.

Colorado Gives Day

Update: We wanted to say thanks to everyone who donated to Clean Energy Action on Colorado Gives Day. We truly appreciate all of your support.

We will continue to be your voice and stand up for a stable climate. We know that we have a long way to go to get our energy system on track. There is a lot of work to do and we are doing our best to keep the conversation in Colorado focused on what would will take to rapidly shift to a clean, renewable energy society. To find out more about what we’ve been up to, see the two recent Clean Energy Action articles below.

Give Where You Live For Colorado Gives Day!

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Thanks to everyone who contributed last year! Clean Energy Action was the recipient of a $5,000 1st Bank bonus due to your generosity. We are eligible again if we exceed last year’s commitments. Please be as generous as you can and we may receive an even larger bonus.

A recurring contribution set to begin on December 9th will help keep CEA healthy all year long and count toward a possible bonus. All transaction costs are covered by 1st Bank and other sponsors so that every dollar goes to our work.

Set up your recurring donation today!
Why contribute to Clean Energy Action?

We are still one of the only voices in Colorado advocating for shutting down our fossil fueled infrastructure once and for all. CEA tears down the pillars that support climate instability and builds up the pillars that support climate stability. We understand that there are both environmental and economic risks to continued fossil dependence. While many have championed the conversion of coal fired plants to gas as a result of 2010 Clean Air Clean Jobs Act (CACJA), Clean Energy Action understands that statewide we have actually committed to increasing our overall emissions in Colorado when Xcel’s investments in new coal are included.  These policies have allowed Xcel to add $1B in fossil (both gas and coal retrofits) infrastructure to its generation mix.

Our work this year to date:

Our small staff accomplishes incredible tasks thanks to your support, and our team of interns and volunteers multiply our efforts. Here is an overview of our work from 2014:

  • Our featured posts are now syndicated nationwide on The Energy Collective, including promotion to their over 45,000 followers on Twitter.
  • Our work on Xcel’s ongoing rate case (14AL-0660E) at the Colorado Public Utility Commission has revealed a trove of information:
    • We understand just how cheap Xcel’s fossil plants are compared to the fuel that they commit us to burning.
    • Xcel’s Colorado ratepayers spent ~$550M on fuel in 2013.  About $370M of that was for coal — and as we’ve long pointed out… those coal costs are not decreasing!
    • The value of Xcel’s fossil power plants is $4B today ($2.9B of which is coal) and will increase to $5B as a result of CACJA cost recovery.
    • This means we spend more on fuel every 10 years than all the fossil plants are worth today.  And for coal it’s more like every 8 years.
  • Through our Citizen Power program, CEA has communicated the truth of the fossil fuel cost pass through (aka the Electricity Commodity Adjustment or ECA) to hundreds of citizens and dozens of legislators.
    • Legislation to change this may be introduced, but the fossil lobby will fight hard for the status quo.
    • We created videos to make the wonky Electric Commodity Adjustment digestible.
  • Clean Energy Action has developed energy literacy in hundreds of students in Boulder County with our energy bike and related energy education program.
With your support, our work in 2015:
  • CEA will develop software to comb through FERC, EPA, EIA and other databases to facilitate local communities understanding the costs of fuel and plants in their own neighborhoods.
    • This data will lead others to close dirty fossil plants instead of paying for dirty fossil fuels.
    • Quickly shutting down fossil plants in every state faster than the Clean Power Plan could hope to achieve.
  • Clean Energy Action has been selected as energy educators for many political representatives in CO.
    • The economics of boom and bust fossil jobs will be easily contrasted with the lasting benefit of jobs repowering the grid.
    • We will drive understanding of the myriad risks of continued fossil dependence.
  • Xcel Colorado may submit a new decoupling proposal and CEA will be prepared to intervene to make certain it’s the best deal for a stable climate.
  • Xcel Colorado will submit their quadrennial Electric Resource Plan (ERP) in fall 2015.
    • Clean Energy Action will expose the folly of discounting future fossil fuel costs.
    • This will rapidly change the generation mix away from fossils toward fuel free renewables.
Set up your recurring donation today!

You give to Clean Energy Action because you know we’re effective. We don’t charge a membership fee and all of our events are free thanks to the community of support. Please keep giving where you live to keep us strong and viable. Your voice is amplified by CEA’s voice across Colorado and the nation.

THANK YOU!

Sample of CEA Work

Sample 2014 Featured Articles
Xcel Rate Case – Decoupling
Face the Risk – Explaining the Electric Commodity Adjustment

What is the Electric Commodity Adjustment and How Does it Relate to Your Electric Bill and Renewable Energy?

Sustainability by the Numb3rs: Understanding Order of Magnitude Calculations

Understanding Order of Magnitude
Calculations

March, 27th, 5:30 pm – 7:00 pm
Fuse @ The Riverside
1724 Broadway St, Boulder, CO 80302

Register Here

This is the first in a series of classes hosted by Clean Energy Action and Boulder Free School.  Find out more on the main course index page.

Class Outline:

Order of magnitude calculations or estimates are a tool commonly used in the natural sciences to understand the general shape and scale of an interesting system.  They use approximate numbers and simple arithmetic to make educated, quantitative guesses or estimations.  The rest of this course will rely on order of magnitude calculations extensively, so it’s important that we make sure everyone has the basic tools required to do them.  They’re also known as “Fermi problems” or “Fermi estimates” after the Italian physicist Enrico Fermi, who was famous for making very fast, roughly correct, estimates of all kinds of crazy things.  This little video from TED-Ed gives a quick intro:

For Example:

If you’re going on a backpacking trip for a week, and a friend tells you their backpack weighs either 5 lbs or 500 lbs, you know intuitively that something is very wrong — you have a grasp of the scale of a backpack — 50lbs is about right. Maybe 35lbs if you’re going ultra-light, maybe 70lbs if you’re a mule, but definitely not 5 or 500.

If you know how to do order of magnitude calculations, you can quickly develop a similar intuition about lots of other kinds of physical systems, including those that are much bigger or smaller than your everyday experience.

Why is this important or useful?

This is important in the context of sustainability, because many of the systems we interact with and affect today are global, and far larger than it’s easy for us to grasp based on our normal daily experience.  Instead we have to build this intuition up for ourselves by playing around with the numbers.  It’s also important because there are a lot of “solutions” out there which might sound good as stories, but when you look at how big an impact they can actually make numerically, they turn out to just be marketing hogwash or outright disinformation.  The media doesn’t do a good job of differentiation between real solutions and hogwash, but with just a little bit of arithmetic and access to the Wikipedia and other online resources, you can get a good idea for yourself.

In this class:

We will explore…

  • The difference between accuracy and precision, and why it’s often desirable to make estimates which are imprecise, but relatively accurate.
  • Scientific notation — what it is, how to use it, and why it’s useful.
  • Units — the importance of keeping track of them, and what they mean, more generally.

Then we’ll do some easy warm-up calculations to try and wrap our heads around the scale of various pieces of our energy system.

Homework:
Teacher Bio

Once upon a time at NASA, Zane got a PhD studying the climate history of Mars, and the geology of the icy moons of Jupiter and Saturn.  Now he’s Clean Energy Action’s director of Research and Policy, working on climate and energy policy, and trying desperately to get everyone to turn off the terraforming machines before it is too late.  Zane also works on sustainable transportation, land-use, and community housing in Boulder.  He lives in a co-op with 11 other people, and his two bicycles and zero cars.