<![CDATA[Colorado Springs Gazette RSS - environment]]> http://gazette.com/rss/environment Fri, 20 Jan 2017 15:33:02 -0700 Zend_Feed http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss <![CDATA[Trump begins with call to kill climate action plan]]> http://gazette.com/trump-begins-with-call-to-kill-climate-action-plan/article/1594792?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/trump-begins-with-call-to-kill-climate-action-plan/article/1594792?custom_click=rss

WASHINGTON —- As President Trump delivered his inaugural address Friday, his staff posted a variety of proposals ranging from an "American First Foreign Policy"  to killing President Obama's climate action plan — plans largely echoing his campaign website.

"For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule," reads the top issue brief on the new president's White House web site. "New executive actions are expected later Friday as the nation's 45th president begins his administration."

After the inauguration ceremony,



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Fri, 20 Jan 2017 11:48:36 -0700
<![CDATA[Clean air advocate subpoenaed by Colorado Springs Utilities in sulfur dioxide dispute]]> http://gazette.com/clean-air-advocate-subpoenaed-by-colorado-springs-utilities-in-sulfur-dioxide-dispute/article/1594749?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/clean-air-advocate-subpoenaed-by-colorado-springs-utilities-in-sulfur-dioxide-dispute/article/1594749?custom_click=rss

Clean air advocate Jacquie Ostrom is being ordered to testify at a deposition and produce four months of emails or other communications sought in the Colorado Springs Utilities action against Leslie Weise.

Ostrom said the subpoena she was served Wednesday night illustrates the "witch hunt" by Utilities, which is seeking sanctions, fines and jail time for Weise, a Monument attorney battling Utilities over a report on air quality. Ostrom served more than a year on a customer advisory group to help Utilities craft its Electric Integrated Resource Plan, which was approved in November 2015. Since then, she has fought to hold Utilities accountable for emissions.

Two more people are expected to be subpoenaed in the case over the



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Fri, 20 Jan 2017 08:38:45 -0700
<![CDATA[It's getting hotter, but experts hesitant to blame Colorado Springs' wild weather on climate change]]> http://gazette.com/its-getting-hotter-but-experts-hesitant-to-blame-colorado-springs-wild-weather-on-climate-change/article/1594613?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/its-getting-hotter-but-experts-hesitant-to-blame-colorado-springs-wild-weather-on-climate-change/article/1594613?custom_click=rss

A midsummer hailstorm that causes millions in damage. Fall wildfires that char thousands of acres. Warm winter winds gusting to more than 100 mph.

It'd be natural to assume climate change was at least partly responsible. But scientists and weather experts in Colorado are hesitant to point fingers.

Drawing a line connecting man-made climate change to any of these occurrences, however, is a difficult and complex task, said Jeff Lukas, a climate researcher for the University of Colorado at Boulder's Western Water Assessment.

"You often hear climate change is making weather more extreme. Perhaps in some ways, but not across the board," said Lukas.



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Wed, 18 Jan 2017 22:33:04 -0700
<![CDATA[Study finds global warming could steal postcard-perfect days]]> http://gazette.com/study-finds-global-warming-could-steal-postcard-perfect-days/article/1594614?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/study-finds-global-warming-could-steal-postcard-perfect-days/article/1594614?custom_click=rss

WASHINGTON — Global warming is going to steal away some of those postcard-perfect weather days in the future, according to a first-of-its-kind projection of nice weather.

On average, Earth will have 10 fewer days of mild and mostly dry weather by the end of the century, the researchers estimate. Some places will get more days perfect for picnics or outdoor weddings, while other places will lose a lot. Rio de Janeiro, Miami and much of Africa are big losers, while Europe and Seattle will gain nicer weather.

"It's the type of weather where you can go outside and do something fun," said study lead author Karin van der Wiel, a meteorology researcher at Princeton University and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric



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Wed, 18 Jan 2017 09:14:02 -0700
<![CDATA[Colorado joins Texas, 11 other states in lawsuit to block Obama coal mining rule]]> http://gazette.com/colorado-joins-texas-11-other-states-in-lawsuit-to-block-obama-coal-mining-rule/article/1594606?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/colorado-joins-texas-11-other-states-in-lawsuit-to-block-obama-coal-mining-rule/article/1594606?custom_click=rss

AUSTIN, Texas — Texas and 12 other states have asked a federal court to block final rules from President Barack Obama’s administration designed to reduce coal mining’s impact on streams.

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton petitioned a Washington-based appeals court for an injunction Tuesday.

Paxton said in a statement that the “Stream Protection Rule” imposes “mandatory, one-size-fits-all” regulations that violate states’ rights.



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Wed, 18 Jan 2017 06:40:41 -0700
<![CDATA[Raptor center gives southern Colorado raptors a second chance at survival]]> http://gazette.com/raptor-center-gives-southern-colorado-raptors-a-second-chance-at-survival/article/1594511?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/raptor-center-gives-southern-colorado-raptors-a-second-chance-at-survival/article/1594511?custom_click=rss

A great horned owl, injured when it flew into a car, will move to a larger outdoor cage for the next stage of its rehabilitation. A merlin falcon, no longer able to fly because of a wing fracture, will join the Air Force Academy's collection of birds of prey. And a tiny northern saw-whet owl, blind in one eye after crashing into a window, will begin training to be an educational bird.

At the Pueblo Raptor Center's intensive care unit, injured and orphaned birds of prey that would be out of luck in the wild get another shot at life.

The center, located off North Pueblo Boulevard, is a temporary home for birds in recovery and permanent residence for many that are unable to be fully rehabilitated.



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Tue, 17 Jan 2017 23:29:51 -0700
<![CDATA[Colorado Springs volunteers discover which feathered species are snowbirds in annual winter count]]> http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-volunteers-discover-which-feathered-species-are-snowbirds-in-annual-winter-count/article/1594381?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-volunteers-discover-which-feathered-species-are-snowbirds-in-annual-winter-count/article/1594381?custom_click=rss

Local birders flocked to the Fountain Creek Nature Center on Saturday to take a poll: Who didn't fly south for the winter?

At the annual winter bird count, participants divided into teams and scoured the park for feathery tenants. When they reconvened at the nature center, volunteer coordinator Tyler Stuart tallied 44 species spotted by volunteers - just below average for this time of year. There were even a few surprises: Virginia rail, a great horned owl, an American pipit and a Townsend's solitaire.

"The relative lack of birds makes it a little harder to find them, but that makes it all the more exciting when you do," Stuart said.



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Sat, 14 Jan 2017 18:38:55 -0700
<![CDATA[Colorado Springs concrete company trying to resurrect gravel quarry]]> http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-concrete-company-trying-to-resurrect-gravel-quarry/article/1594319?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-concrete-company-trying-to-resurrect-gravel-quarry/article/1594319?custom_click=rss

The Hitch Rack Quarry project might not be dead yet.

Transit Mix Concrete on Wednesday filed a petition for reconsideration of the Colorado Mining Land Reclamation Board's decision in October to deny the company's permit application to operate an almost 400-acre granite quarry west of Highway 115 along both sides of Little Turkey Creek Road.

The Colorado Springs concrete company claims new evidence was presented illegally by opponents during the Oct. 26-27 hearings. It also said in its request for reconsideration of the 3-2 decision that the board did not properly explain why it went against a recommendation that the state's Department of Reclamation, Mining and Safety approve the permit.



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Fri, 13 Jan 2017 17:28:06 -0700
<![CDATA[EPA says it can't pay damages from mine spill due to 'sovereign immunity']]> http://gazette.com/epa-says-it-cant-pay-damages-from-mine-spill-due-to-sovereign-immunity/article/1594290?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/epa-says-it-cant-pay-damages-from-mine-spill-due-to-sovereign-immunity/article/1594290?custom_click=rss

DENVER — The Environmental Protection Agency will not repay claims totaling more than $1.2 billion for economic damages from a mine waste spill the agency accidentally triggered in Colorado, saying the law prohibits it.

The EPA said Friday the claims could be refiled in federal court, or Congress could authorize payments.

But attorneys for the EPA and the Justice Department concluded the EPA is barred from paying the claims because of sovereign immunity, which prohibits most lawsuits against the government.

An official announcement is planned later Friday. The Associated Press was provided the outlines of the decision in advance.



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Fri, 13 Jan 2017 17:19:44 -0700
<![CDATA[Gov. Hickenlooper won't issue clean-air executive order in Colorado]]> http://gazette.com/gov.-hickenlooper-wont-issue-clean-air-executive-order-in-colorado/article/1594089?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/gov.-hickenlooper-wont-issue-clean-air-executive-order-in-colorado/article/1594089?custom_click=rss

DENVER — Citing backlash from Republicans, Colorado's Democratic governor said Tuesday he has abandoned the idea of issuing an executive order to seek a one-third cut in greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

But Gov. John Hickenlooper insisted he hadn't given up on the proposal's goals — or his own commitment to maintaining Colorado's status as a national leader in fighting air pollution.

"I think the response — the pushback — from the executive order was so intense that the potential benefits were outweighed by the collateral damage," Hickenlooper told reporters on the eve of the 2017 state legislative session.

"That being said, I continue to hold it up as a vision" for reducing



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Wed, 11 Jan 2017 08:33:01 -0700
<![CDATA[Zero-emission boat prepares for round-the-world odyssey]]> http://gazette.com/zero-emission-boat-prepares-for-round-the-world-odyssey/article/1594113?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/zero-emission-boat-prepares-for-round-the-world-odyssey/article/1594113?custom_click=rss

PARIS — The first self-sufficient boat powered only by emission-free energy will start a six-year trip around the world in the spring.

Energy Observer, a former multi-hull race boat converted into a green vessel equipped with solar panels, wind turbines and a hydrogen fuel cell system, will be powered by wind, the sun and self-generated hydrogen.

The 5 million euro ($5.25 million) boat, which is currently in a shipyard in Saint-Malo, will set sail from the Brittany port and will make its first of 101 stops across 50 countries in Paris as part of a six-year circumnavigation.



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Wed, 11 Jan 2017 08:25:32 -0700
<![CDATA[The crack in this Antarctic ice shelf just grew by 11 miles. A dramatic break could be imminent]]> http://gazette.com/the-crack-in-this-antarctic-ice-shelf-just-grew-by-11-miles.-a-dramatic-break-could-be-imminent/article/1593882?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/the-crack-in-this-antarctic-ice-shelf-just-grew-by-11-miles.-a-dramatic-break-could-be-imminent/article/1593882?custom_click=rss

An enormous rift in one of Antarctica’s largest ice shelves grew dramatically over the past month, and a chunk nearly the size of Delaware could break away as soon as later this winter, British scientists reported this week.

If this happens, it could accelerate a further breakup of the ice shelf, essentially removing a massive cork of ice that keeps some of Antarctica’s glaciers from flowing into the ocean. The long term result, scientists project, could be to noticeably raise global sea levels by 10 centimeters, or almost four inches.

It’s the latest sign of major ice loss in the fast warming Antarctic Peninsula, which has already seen the breakup of two other shelves in the same region, events that have



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Sat, 07 Jan 2017 21:58:57 -0700
<![CDATA[Colorado Springs to undertake biggest tree removal project]]> http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-to-undertake-biggest-tree-removal-project/article/1593837?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/colorado-springs-to-undertake-biggest-tree-removal-project/article/1593837?custom_click=rss

Dennis Will is nervous.

"This is scary stuff," the Colorado Springs forester said of the Forestry Division's biggest tree removal project ever, which was announced Friday and is set to begin later this month.

The city, he said, aims to remove trees and clear brush to thin out overgrowth and reduce the fire danger on 100 acres of woods every year - projects that are typically accompanied by public backlash. On Wednesday, into his 11th year as forester, he'll lead a session at Ivywild School to discuss a 250-acre project focusing largely on Stratton Open Space where crews will working on 130 acres. Trees will also be removed in Stratton Forest, Bear Creek Canyon Park and University Park Open Space.



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Sat, 07 Jan 2017 12:09:52 -0700
<![CDATA[Monument attorney facing jail in Drake emissions dispute to learn fate next month]]> http://gazette.com/monument-attorney-facing-jail-in-drake-emissions-dispute-to-learn-fate-next-month/article/1593814?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/monument-attorney-facing-jail-in-drake-emissions-dispute-to-learn-fate-next-month/article/1593814?custom_click=rss

DENVER - Monument attorney Leslie Weise likely will learn Feb. 13 whether she will be sanctioned, fined or even jailed for six months under a contempt citation sought by Colorado Springs Utilities and the city, Colorado Chief Appeals Judge Alan M. Loeb indicated at a Friday hearing.

The city and Utilities pressed for the citation after the state Court of Appeals inadvertently sent Weise the very Utilities document she had been fighting for in court.

Weise said she returned the document on sulfur dioxide emissions without keeping a copy, as ordered by the court Nov. 16.



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Sat, 07 Jan 2017 07:11:53 -0700
<![CDATA[Scientists keeping watch on growing Antarctic crack]]> http://gazette.com/scientists-keeping-watch-on-growing-antarctic-crack/article/1593826?custom_click=rss http://gazette.com/scientists-keeping-watch-on-growing-antarctic-crack/article/1593826?custom_click=rss

WASHINGTON — Scientists are watching, but not alarmed by, a growing crack at the edge of a key floating ice shelf in Antarctica.

New images show the long-watched rift in the Larsen C ice shelf grew 11 miles (18 kilometers) in the last few weeks. The crack is now about 60 miles long (97 kilometers) and about 300 feet wide (100 meters).

If it grows another dozen miles, a Delaware-sized iceberg could break off and float away.

University of Colorado scientist Ted Scambos said that could happen soon, likely in March, and would "cut deeper to the bone" of the ice shelf, changing its shape. Ice shelves — sheets of floating ice — wrap around three-quarters of the South Pole's coastline. They provide



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Sat, 07 Jan 2017 07:11:40 -0700