Allen Best

Allen Best

Allen Best is a Colorado-based journalist who publishes an e-magazine called Big Pivots. Reach him at [email protected]


Why baby steps when the Colorado River needs big strides?

By: - October 3, 2022

This commentary is republished with permission from Big Pivots. Rivers and streams on Colorado’s Western Slope chattered excitedly with runoff during mid-September after several days of rain, softening landscapes that had turned sullen after another hot summer. The water was a blink of good news for a Colorado River that needs something more. It needs a long, […]


What Boebert and Frisch did not say

By: - September 14, 2022

This commentary originally appeared at Big Pivots. U.S. Rep. Lauren Boebert and her challenger, Adam Frisch, debated on Saturday evening at a forum in Grand Junction sponsored by Club 20. Frisch, a Democrat, tried to define the Republican Boebert as a legislator who talks a lot but gets nothing done. Boebert suggested Frisch would be […]


Hedging our bets on water in Colorado and beyond

By: - September 7, 2022

Lake Mead’s receding waters have exposed sunken boats, dead bodies, and more. But the wisdom of a bet placed in 2005 by Las Vegas has also been revealed. The Southern Nevada Water Authority draws 90% of its water for a population of 2.3 million from Lake Mead. It had two intake pipes, one higher and […]


A small mountain town takes a big step

By: - August 22, 2022

This commentary originally appeared in Crested Butte, a one-time coal mining town, has now turned its back on natural gas. Town councilors unanimously agreed that any new building erected on the 60 vacant lots cannot be served by gas. Major remodels must be electric ready. It’s Colorado’s first natural gas ban, although 80 other […]


What advocates of nuclear must also talk about

By: - August 5, 2022

This commentary is republished with permission from Big Pivots. A nuclear reactor might be a nice addition to the economy of Craig, the community in  Colorado. But can Colorado afford nuclear power? Three coal-burning units at Craig will be closed between 2025 and 2030. Those plants and associated mining provide the Moffat County School District with […]


Endless nonsense about the high price of gasoline

By: - July 22, 2022

This commentary originally appeared in Big Pivots. What a lot of complaining I hear about gas prices. I’ve done some myself. I also see a lot of blaming, especially of President Joe Biden. “It’s all his fault.” Hmm, could Russia’s invasion of Ukraine have just a little bit to do with the latest surge in […]


This energy investment rivals I-70 and others in Colorado history

By: - July 8, 2022

This commentary is republished with permission from Big Pivots. Colorado will soon embark on a change with few rivals in the last 100 years. Think of the dismantling of geography by construction of Interstate 70 through the tunnels, over Vail Pass, and through Glenwood Canyon. Think of Denver International Airport. Think of the arrival of […]


Will Colorado electricity supplies keep pace with the warming climate?

By: - June 28, 2022

A version of this commentary originally appeared in Big Pivots. A late-June coolish spell in Colorado is unusual. The trend is toward hot and hotter. Denver in June matched a record set just a few years ago for the earliest time to hit 100 degrees Fahrenheit. Grand Junction last year set an all-time record of […]


How can a me-first terrorist be made into a hero?

By: - June 3, 2022

This commentary comes to Newsline via Big Pivots. A confounding aspect of the climate change challenge has been disagreements about the most basic of facts, namely human complicity. We had the same fact-based problem with the last presidential election. Then there’s what happened in Granby, the Colorado mountain town that continues to be at the […]


What will come of these hot, dry winds licking at winter’s back door?

By: - May 16, 2022

This commentary originally appeared in Big Pivots. Ponds on a ranch in northwestern Colorado earlier this month were full, a rare treat in recent years for horses that have gathered like at a spa. It was a good winter there, cold and snowy. Now, a ranch owner had begun planning for a fiery summer. “It’s […]


This fossil-free technology heats homes in frigid Fraser

By: - April 28, 2022

The coldest temperature this winter at the new home of Joe Smyth and Kristen Taddonio was 17 below. They live in Fraser, the Colorado town that used to get far, far colder. Still, that February night was cold enough to test the design and technologies employed in construction of the couple’s 1,176-square-foot house. They insulated […]


Will this coal plant deliver electricity during a 2030 heat wave?

By: - April 13, 2022

This commentary originally appeared in Big Pivots. For all electrical utilities, R is the first letter of the alphabet. Reliability, keeping the lights on, comes before A, affordability. Colorado’s utility regulators soon will decide the role of Comanche 3, the state’s youngest but most unreliable coal-fired power plant, in ensuring reliability, and whether more natural […]