Environmental Health

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  • Phone: 970-328-8755
    Fax: 970-328-8788

    Environmental Health
    P.O. Box 179
    500 Broadway
    Eagle, Colorado 81631-0179 

    environment@eaglecounty.us


Commissioners adopt Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community

Dec. 14, 2016 - The Eagle County Board of Commissioners unanimously adopted the Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community at their regular meeting Tuesday, following a presentation by local environmental and sustainability professionals.

Kim Langmaid, vice president of Walking Mountains Science Center, along with the organization’s sustainability and stewardship team led the process that began in January. Over 30 community members from towns, county services and businesses participated in meetings that included education, discussion of policy and global targets, and strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Community conversations hosted by county commissioners in the spring and open house events throughout the fall also helped to engage residents and shape the Climate Action Plan.

“The constituent-led part of this plan is critical,” said Commissioner Kathy Chandler-Henry. “Also, that the plan comes from a community, science and education organization puts it on sound footing.”

The plan outlines targets and milestones, including a goal to reduce countywide greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050. Strategies include expanding energy efficiency programs for buildings, developing new public transit options, and increasing renewable power supplies. 

“With federal climate policy and actions now in question, state and local climate action plans are even more important,” said Langmaid. “The most direct solution to the climate problem is to decrease greenhouse gas emissions by burning less fuel.”

Studies show rising concentrations of CO2 and other greenhouse gases from burning coal, natural gas and oil are warming and changing climates around the world. In Eagle County, winters are getting shorter and warmer, and summers are getting hotter. According to a 2015 study led by the University of Colorado and Colorado State University, there are now 23 fewer days of freezing temperatures than in the 1970s. Precipitation, river flows, and water supplies are changing and less predictable as carbon dioxide emissions continue to grow.

Climate pollution from burning fuels is also expensive. Eagle County’s baseline 2014 energy inventory showed that energy expenses for electricity, natural gas, gasoline and diesel exceeded $243 million, and resulting emissions were 1.4 million metric tons.  Most of the emissions, or 60 percent, were from buildings, with 27 percent from vehicles, 10 percent from the landfill, and 3 percent from the airport. 

For additional information on the Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community, visit www.walkingmountains.org/cap.