Environment

Colorado air agency’s policies ‘inadequate,’ but no evidence of falsified data, report says

BY: - September 24, 2021

Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser on Friday released the results of an independent investigation into allegations of illegal air-quality permitting procedures made earlier this year by three whistleblowers in the state’s Air Pollution Control Division. The public report on the findings of the investigation, conducted by attorneys from the law firm Troutman Pepper, says that […]

Human composting is coming to Denver

BY: - September 24, 2021

A dead person is transformed from human remains into soil in 30 days through a process often referred to as human composting — and it’s now legal in Colorado.  Natural organic reduction — the formal term for human composting — is legal only in three states: Colorado, Oregon and Washington. Washington in 2019 became the […]

COMMENTARY

Preserve Camp Hale and other public lands for future generations

BY: - September 24, 2021

During a recent visit to the National Museum of the United States Army at Fort Belvoir, Virginia, I learned that by the end of World War II in 1945 the U.S. had 89 Army divisions deployed overseas, including 68 in Europe: 47 infantry, 16 armored, four airborne and one mountain — the 10th Mountain Division. […]

COMMENTARY

Smokescreens mask Front Range air quality problem — and solutions

BY: - September 24, 2021

Western wildfires billowed out another discouraging summer of visibly poor air for Denver and the Front Range. While the pollutants in this smoke are unhealthy on their own, they quite literally provided a smokescreen to our most enduring local air quality issue: harmful levels of ground-level ozone. We typically consider June through mid-September the height […]

COMMENTARY
smog

These public servants think the public should stay out of their business

BY: - September 23, 2021

Colorado state agencies have a well-earned reputation for anti-transparent behavior. Throughout state government records are regularly destroyed, and the pandemic has exposed persistent disdain for transparency in the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. But an agency within the health department — the Air Pollution Control Division — has refined antipathy to open government to […]

Smokescreen: Years of internal complaints suggest air agency’s favoritism toward polluters

BY: - September 23, 2021

At the pediatric clinic where Dr. Sheela Mahnke sees her young patients in Thornton, 85% of the families who walk through the door are on Medicaid. Many come from the predominantly low-income and Latino neighborhoods in the north Denver area that have struggled with a long history of air and water pollution. And over the […]

Smokescreen: Are Colorado officials countering misinformation on smog — or hiding behind it?

BY: - September 22, 2021

The dozen or so speakers who testified in opposition to Colorado’s proposed Employee Traffic Reduction Program at an August hearing came from a variety of backgrounds. They made a variety of arguments. But there was one point that many of them repeated over and over again: They weren’t sure why the Air Quality Control Commission […]

U.S. House Dems pass $28.6B in disaster aid for recovery from hurricanes, wildfires, floods

BY: - September 21, 2021

WASHINGTON — Congressional Democrats unveiled a short-term spending measure on Tuesday that would keep the federal government operating through Dec. 3 and provide $28.6 billion for costs related to recent natural disasters.  The bill was passed by the House on a party-line vote Tuesday night, 220-211. But it faces a battle in the evenly divided Senate, […]

Smokescreen: Who killed ETRP, Colorado’s traffic-reducing climate rule?

BY: - September 21, 2021

None of the members of Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission were happy with the decision that lay before them at their August 2021 hearing. Many were confused about what exactly it meant. But everyone seemed to agree on one thing: Rarely, if ever, had something like it happened before. “This is an extraordinary circumstance,” said […]

At Colorado’s tight-lipped air pollution agency, a ‘culture of fear’ prevails

BY: - September 20, 2021

Few Coloradans know the Air Pollution Control Division by name, but every time they take a breath of Rocky Mountain air, they’re impacted by the decisions it makes. A branch of the state health department with a staff of about 200, the APCD is tasked with overseeing Colorado air-quality policy and, increasingly, with leading many […]

Biden administration to move BLM headquarters back to D.C. from Grand Junction

BY: - September 17, 2021

President Joe Biden’s administration announced on Friday that it would return the headquarters of the Bureau of Land Management to Washington, D.C., reversing a controversial decision by the Trump administration — with the support of a bipartisan array of Colorado political leaders — to relocate the office to Grand Junction. The BLM’s Grand Junction office […]

Biden visits Colorado to pitch clean-energy spending in infrastructure, budget bills

BY: - September 15, 2021

Joe Biden made his first visit to Colorado as president on Tuesday, stopping at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden to pitch his administration’s efforts to tackle the climate crisis and accelerate the clean-energy transition. “We’re blinking code red as a nation,” Biden said in remarks delivered against a backdrop of solar panels and […]