Entries Tagged as General Interest
The beauty of the challenge before us is that while it will take hard work, the solutions are right outside: the sun that beams down 300 days a year and the wind that blows across the plains every day. These sources of proven, reliable clean energy can power the future in a way that not only eases the threat of catastrophic climate change but also provides jobs and economic development right here at home.
One solution to the weekend high country gridlock drawing too little attention seems deserving of more: Replacing at least a few hundred of those cars with ski buses.
Few living things are as emblematic of the Rocky Mountain West as quaking Aspen trees. Rustling in fresh green waves, their fluttering leaves gently herald the freshness of a mountain morning. Ablaze in gold and crimson in the fall, their bold expanses proclaim the end of summer. Tall and sturdy, their knobby black and white posts provide quiet guidance to backcountry skiers in a white world.
But Aspen trees are in trouble. Nearly one in every five Colorado aspen trees has died off in recent years. The phenomenon even has a name: Sudden Aspen Decline or SAD. It’s sad indeed and new research is linking the deaths to climate change.
It’s easy to think that climate change is “out there’’ in time or “over there’’ in space. Our tendencies are to focus on more immediate concerns like doing a job or paying the bills.
But the effects are creeping into our lives and onto our doorsteps. Driving along the Interstate 70 corridor between metro Denver and the ski areas, you can’t miss the vast hillsides of grey dead Lodgepole Pines. The mountain pine beetles that have ravaged many forests have also been linked to climate change. Every time I drive through, I fear the spark that could create a conflagration.
And now the aspens are dying.
All around us, the notion of building community through sustainable living is taking shape. Colorado's new solar gardens law will make it possible to buy solar energy even if investing in a rooftop array of your own doesn't make sense. The desire to grow healthy food in our neighborhoods is sprouting all around us. We're cutting our energy bills through simple behavioral changes and efficiency improvements that can quickly pay for themselves. Members of our community are quietly pioneering new ways to get around town and new ways to share resources.