Archive for November, 2006

Coors Odor Hotline

November 20, 2006

Believe it or not Coors has set up an Odor Hotline to help them identify when there are odor problems at the wastewater plant off of Highway 58.  I am told they’ve invested quite a bit of time and money over the past year to reduce the intensity and frequency of odor problems, and this helps them continue to improve.

The number is 303-277-2112.

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Council Supports Golden Sustainability Initiative

November 17, 2006

Last night city council expressed its unanimous support for a Golden Sustainability Initiative. This is great news, but of course the hard work is just beginning. Tons of folks reached out to city council expressing support, and a bunch more showed up at the meeting last night to express their support during the public comment period. My thanks to everyone who weighed in, and now the stage is set to do some great things.

The next step: some sort of town hall meeting in the first part of 2007 focused on defining what the goals of our initiative should be. I offered some ideas about what those goals might be to help start the discussion, and many of the emails I received had thoughtful responses to those goals (ranging from “too ambitious” to “not ambitious enough” as well as good ideas about how to make them work better) plus some good suggestions about the community process. Once we figure out the goals, then we’ll take the subsequent step of figuring out the action plan, and then we’ll have our work cut out for us. Lots of folks also had great ideas about the action plan as well.

In case you haven’t seen my ideas for what our Golden Sustainability Initiative goals might be, I’ve included them here .  I want to underscore that these really are just ideas for the sake of discussion, and we know how a couple of months before the community meeting to think hard about what might make sense.

1. Increase our community’s energy efficiency and our use of renewable sources of energy. Specifically:

  • Reduce the City of Golden’s energy usage by 25% and increase to 50% the proportion of its energy use derived from renewable energy sources within ten years (“25 x 50 in 10”).
  • Reduce overall community energy usage in Golden by 15% and increase to 15% the proportion of its energy use derived from renewable energy sources within ten years (“15 x 15 in 10”).

2. Improve the economic health of our community by increasing business opportunities focused on energy efficiency and renewable energy and by reducing the energy costs of all Golden businesses. Specifically:

  • Double the number of jobs in Golden in the energy efficiency and renewable energy sectors within ten years.
  • Enable businesses located in Golden to lower their energy costs by reducing the average energy consumption by 15% within ten years.

3. Improve the energy efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of new and existing buildings in Golden. Specifically:

  • Ensure that within ten years 90% of all new buildings constructed in Golden each year are built to green building standards.
  • Ensure that within ten years 50% of all additions in Golden each year are built to green building standards.
  • Revise Golden’s land use code to reflect the best practices in sustainability once every five years.

4. Ensure that Golden sustains a clean, stable water supply into the future. Specifically:

  • Reduce Golden’s per capita water use by 15% in ten years.
  • Maintain the highest water quality standards for Golden’s water supply.

5. Increase the ability of Golden residents and visitors to travel to and through Golden using alternative transportation. Specifically:

  • Reduce the community’s total Vehicle Miles Traveled by 15% in ten years.

Golden’s First Wind Turbine

November 3, 2006

On Wednesday I had the honor of being part of a turbine-raising of what I believe is Golden’s very first wind turbine.  The turbine, which sits on private property near Jackson and 15th (just north of Safeway), is a demonstration project by Southwest Windpower.  They call it a “residential power appliance,” by which they mean to emphasize that this a relatively small and affordable turbine designed for residential uses.  I don’t have any photos yet but I believe the city will have some soon that will go in the December Informer and perhaps on the web site.  The Rocky Mountain News has a nice photo as well as an article on the project’s venture capital (“Venture capital group gambles on wind power”).  The turbine, a 1.8kw design called the Skystream, is expected to cover between 30 and 50 percent of the Courtad’s office building.  My hat is off to Chuck and Jeanette for helping to pave the way.  I encourage you to swing by and take a look.