Tag Archives: coal

URGENT: SAVE BOULDER’S BID FOR A MUNICIPAL UTILITY

This week could prove critical in determining Boulder’s energy future, and CEA needs your support.

Xcel Energy has launched a bid to stop Boulder’s 7-year effort toward municipalization in its tracks. One April 17th, the Boulder City Council considers two proposals from Xcel designed to dissuade us from our quest to control our own energy destiny.

Two days later, on April 19th, the Public Utilities Commission is holding an equally critical hearing on a motion to dismiss Boulder’s municipalization case outright.

We need your help to keep municipalization alive!

This is a critical moment for the future of independent municipal utilities in Colorado, so we ask not just Boulder residents but all Coloradans to step up to the plate.

Email the PUC at dora_PUC_complaints@state.co.us​​ with your support for Boulder’s constitutional right to form a municipal utility. A few things to mention:

  • Communities should have a right to determine their energy future and should not be constrained by Xcel’s thinking and corporate constraints
  • Under the law of Colorado, Boulder has a constitutional right to form a municipal utility, and it is up to the Commission to protect that right, and make sure it means more than words in a statute book
  • At this defining moment in the history of our planet, we need more options than a profit-driven monopoly that remains dependent on fossil fuels for more than 70% of its power generation.

We also ask our supporters to contact the City Council at council@bouldercolorado.gov and tell them to stay the course! We encourage you to remind them that:

  • Boulder Energy Future has worked for seven years to build a realistic, reasonable alternative to continued partnership with Xcel.
  • Boulder voters have weighed in on this issue not once but several times. In ballot measures in 2011, 2013, and 2014 Boulder’s residents asserted their demand to control their own energy future.
  • The two deals proposed by Xcel are both unacceptable, and do not reflect the best interests or desires of the rate-payers of Boulder.

Most importantly, there is a Stay the Course Rally outside the Municipal Building at 1777 Broadway, Boulder CO 80302 from 5:00-6:00 pm before the City Council hearing on Monday April 17th. Please come and show your support for Boulder’s Energy Future and the municipalization effort. Wear green and bring signs or posters. A couple ideas for signs and poster slogans:

  • “STAY THE COURSE!”
  • “Just Say NO (To Xcel)!”
  • “Don’t Give Away Our Energy Future!”

Finally, we ask all of our supporters to be polite and respectful when communicating with the PUC and the City Council. We cannot overstate the importance of addressing our officials in a way that is clear and concise, and also gracious and polite.

Thank you for your support. Together we will make a difference!

CEA Leads Coloradans in Challenging XCEL

The effort to decarbonize Colorado’s largest electricity supplier, Xcel Energy, advanced in Denver last month as Coloradans lined up to speak at the Colorado Public Utilities Commission hearing on Xcel’s 2016 Electric Resource Plan. Members of CEA led Coloradans from all walks of life in voicing their concerns about Colorado’s electricity future.

The hearing room at the Public Utilities Commission was overflowing as the people of Colorado addressed the three PUC Commissioners. They expressed a host of concerns about Xcel’s plan,  and asked for more focus on the abundance of cost-effective renewable energy available in Colorado, in accordance with Colorado’s laws and regulations.

The PUC is a part of the Colorado Department of Regulatory Agencies, and is responsible for regulating many parts of our state’s utilities, transportation, and telecommunications.

 

Issues raised during the public testimony included the need to:

  • Consider climate change and the urgency of reducing carbon emissions
  • Increase the reliance on renewable energy in order to reduce both emissions and costs
  • Accelerate the adoption of storage technologies to support the integration of higher levels of renewable energy
  • Begin contingency planning in the event of future coal bankruptcies and potential coal supply constraints
  • Allow new, cleaner resources to replace energy generation from older, dirtier, more expensive fossil fuel resources

Citizen witnesses also discussed the need to analyze the choices between renewable energy (with no future fuel costs) and fossil fuel resources (with billions of dollars of future fuel costs) using lower discount rates. A lower discount rate will show increased savings from cost-effective renewable energy because future fuel costs won’t be so heavily discounted.

Discounting the approximately $60 billion in future fuel costs associated with Xcel’s Electric Resource Plan at Xcel’s Weighted Average Cost of Capital (“WACC”) will have the effect of shrinking these future fuel costs and also shrinking the savings that will come from cost-effective renewable energy resources like wind and solar that don’t have future fuel costs.

More details on Xcel’s Electric Resource Plan and the key issues, including the importance of the choice of discount rate, are available in the public comment filing made by Clean Energy Action Board member Leslie Glustrom.

CEA is grateful that the new appointees to the Colorado PUC , Chairperson Jeff Ackerman and Commissioner Wendy Moser, along with Commissioner Frances Koncilja, are dedicated to hearing from the public and that the public is well enough informed to provide useful and compelling testimony!

You can also check out Christi Turner’s comprehensive article in Boulder Weekly and learn more about this important step froward in the fight for cheaper, cleaner power.

Protect Colorado’s Forests from New Coal Mining

Tell the Forest Service not to give Arch Coal, a company that today filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy,  access to 19,000 acres of pristine, roadless National Forest for new coal mining.

Devastating Numbers

  • New mines would give the nation’s second largest coal company access to 170 million tons of publicly-owned coal
  • Coal would release 485 million tons of carbon pollution into the atmosphere along with millions of cubic feet of methane emissions
  • The Forest Service’s own analysis estimates $13 billion in environmental and economic damages

Keep Colorado's Forests Untouched and Its Coal in the Ground

Dear U.S. Forest Service,
We the undersigned write to urge you to withdraw your proposal to open areas protected under the Colorado Roadless Rule to new coal mining.

The numbers associated with this proposal are devastating:

- Over 19,000 acres of pristine forest opened to new mining
- Allowing Arch Coal to access to 170 million tons of coal that, when burnt, send 486 million tons of carbon pollution into our atmosphere
- According to your own analysis, this carbon pollution would result in $13 billion in environmental and economic damages

This proposal flies in the face of the administration’s aim of reducing carbon emissions by 26%. After the Paris conference, leadership is needed to end new fossil fuel leases. China has announced a 3 year ban on new coal leases. The administration should begin to take steps to end fossil fuel leasing entirely: leaving the Colorado Roadless Rule intact would be an important first step.

The North Fork Valley is home to some Colorado’s most beautiful landscapes. Please keep Colorado’s forests untouched for future generations and keep Colorado’s coal where it belongs: in the ground. Please reject this dangerous loophole and keep Colorado’s Roadless rule intact.

Thank you for your consideration,

[your signature]

94 signatures

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Keep Our Forests Untouched

Explore the area around Paonia, and you’ll find some of the Western Slope’s most beautiful country. That’s why in 2012, the area was included in 4.2 million acres of National Forest that were set aside under the Colorado Roadless Rule.

The Roadless Rule was intended to conserve Colorado’s forest for future generations but a Forest Service proposal threatens to give Arch Coal access to thousands of acres of roadless National Forest for new mines.

Keep Coal in the Ground

China recently announced a 3 year ban on new coal mining. The Obama administration should also halt new coal leases, but these new mines would give Arch Coal access to 170 million tons of publicly-owned coal. When burned, this coal would release 485 million tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere along with millions of cubic feet of methane emissions.

We have until January 15th to tell the Forest Service: keep our forests untouched and keep this coal in the ground! Act now to protect Colorado’s forests from new coal mining.

“Ultimately, if we’re gonna prevent large parts of this Earth from becoming not only inhospitable but uninhabitable in our lifetimes, we’re gonna have to keep some fossil fuels in the ground.” – President Obama, upon rejecting the proposed Keystone XL Pipeline

Tell the Bureau of Land Management to Stop the Coal Giveaway!

12 pm to 4 pm
Listening Session from 1 pm to 3 pm
Arrive at Noon to Signup and Enjoy Lunch
Marriott Denver West 
1717 Denver West Drive, Golden, CO 80401

In recent years, the Bureau of Land Management has “leased” a ton of coal in Colorado for the price of a gumball – 25 cents ! How can we halt climate change until we stop giving away coal on our public lands?

Join Sierra Club, the National Wildlife Federation, and other advocates as we tell the Bureau of Land Management to stop giving away coal on our public lands!

We need you to show up in person and tell BLM to:

  • Stop giving away our coal at subsidized prices.
  • Give American taxpayers a fair share of revenue from coal mined on public lands to support local education and infrastructure.
  • Include on a price on carbon in the cost of coal mined on public lands!
  • Keep it in the ground!

This is a rare opportunity to give direct feedback to the federal government on rules that haven’t changed in decades – don’t miss it!

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.