Written by Marie Venner
Awareness is rising in Colorado and nationally that the system we have is not the one we need. We can do much better than settling for 70% dirty energy, continued handouts to wealthy Wall Street monopolies, destruction of the land we are committed to protect and the ability of all to thrive.. These are our children and families at stake. Our beautiful state, this common home we are responsible for at this point in time, needs us.
Last week, after a moving statement to Gov. Polis’ climate advisor, someone said to me: “There’s a lot on my plate, but I’d love to try to contribute! What’s the best way to stay involved and make the highest leverage contribution?”
There are new opportunities on the horizon, in the legislature or as quick responses now. Big, important decisions are on the horizon, and we can make a difference. We can bring about the future we are fighting for, the beautiful visions shared by your community members on this issue!
As Sam and Brigid write, the Earth doesn’t care who is president! Our action to protect our mother and do our part in bringing about the care and protection needed is critical. A better world is possible. Take care of yourself but don’t quit! YOU are needed! Your very particular contribution, your network, and your voice in and communication to those communities matter!
- The most cost-effective way to reach 26% by 2025 greenhouse gas reductions is to close coal by 2025 and rapidly increase renewables. We can get to 80% renewable electricity (“B range”) by 2025 (see 2018 and 2020 CO bids and pricing). This is our baseline expectation for Xcel’s new Energy Resource Plan!
- If utility monopolies don’t want to meet these expectations, necessary for us to meet state climate goals — those 26% by 2025 reductions and what is well possible in this market, the monopoly can be recompensed. See New Mexico example. This could be clarified by the PUC and in legislation. Legislation (like VA) could also require coal closures by 2025.
- Some states like Maine are also taking back their public utility from extractive, out-of-state utility monopolies. The Sierra Club in Maine has made this bill their top priority last session and this one and the allies there have created many useful resources. Why do Consumer/Community Owned Utilities Cost Less? Others who replaced their IOU – Lyons, Ft. Collins, Long Island, NY, Winter Park, FL, Detroit, MI (historical) and All of Nebraska (historical).
- Email email@example.com and tell them! Tell Gov. Polis to be a climate hero and get this done! Email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask him to do this, and also not seek to remove himself from climate accountability as he did last month.
- Consider working toward public banking in the upcoming months. Ask your state legislators to support and co-sponsor public banking. North Dakota has had a public bank well-serving their state for 101 years! Public banks back low interest loans to communities and students, prevent recessions where they are located, and keep investment in-state. Alberta has one too, and local public banks supported most of the clean energy in Germany! If you remember and share just one thing: Banks (can) borrow at close to zero percent interest (0.25%) from the Federal Reserve “window” and public banks can lend at very low interest rates, like 1-2%. Private banks charge more and take that as profit. Why do we provide public money for private profit? That’s a question for another day. The important thing is that when publicly owned the purpose is public benefit, not extraction from people or our state.
A quarter of U.S. voters now clearly state that global warming is “extremely personally important,” a nearly twofold increase from 2015. The same is true in Colorado. We can have a better, safer, more solid future for our state with a livable climate, clean air and renewable energy!
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