Carbondale, CO Energy and Climate Protection Plan

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Carbondale, CO, US

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Type: Policy

Status: Adopted

Source File: Click here


Shown below is the Executive Summary only. To access the entire 17-page document, refer to the source file.

The Town of Carbondale joined the Cities for Climate Protection Campaign in the summer of 2005 and committed to developing an emissions reduction strategy. The Town then asked CORE to develop an emissions inventory (Appendix A). The Environmental Board took on the issue of creating a local energy plan and organized Carbondale’s first Energy Extravaganza. Over 150 people attended the event in November 2005 and brainstormed initial ideas for the energy plan. Over the last 6 months Carbondale citizens, led by CORE and the Environmental Board, have been working on the creation of an “Energy Plan”, which outlines steps for Carbondale to significantly reduce emissions, become more energy independent, and strengthen the economy in the process.

This plan provides a broad, long term vision, as well as intermediate steps for attaining these goals. It is founded on input from over 150 community members, the Carbondale Environmental Board, experts in the energy industry, and the elected officials in the Town of Carbondale. The plan will evolve and continue to be refined over time, but lays out a framework and steps, to significantly improve Carbondale’s carbon footprint.

The Energy Plan proposes five key strategies:

1. Lead by example. Municipal government should make its buildings and operations a model of energy efficiency and renewable energy while reducing energy costs. Government can be the early adopter, making it easier for more households and businesses to adopt practices once they see they work.
2. Change the rules that influence energy use. Many aspects of energy use are the result of rules (policies, ordinances, regulations) that were made over time. Change these rules and we significantly change how we use energy. This plan recommends that the Town upgrade various ordinances and regulations that influence energy use, where useful adopt new ones, and where appropriate, join with others to address issues beyond town boundaries.
3. Partner with utilities and others to create programs to remove barriers to wiser energy use. The Town should work with Xcel Energy, Holy Cross Energy, CORE, and others to accelerate the transition to a clean energy future, offering programs to households and businesses that combine financing, technical assistance, and education.
4. Increase local renewable energy supplies The Town, with the ability to tap significant funding, can view itself as a local energy producer and investor.
5. Cultivate clean energy jobs and businesses. Carbondale can pursue implementation of this energy plan in ways that strengthen the community’s “green brand” and supports and creates local jobs. In addition, Carbondale can take active steps to support and grow sustainable energy enterprises.