Headlines – December 17, 2021

Headlines December 17, 2021


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Transportation Commission Adopts New Rules On GHG Emissions

The Transportation Commission of Colorado adopted new rules yesterday that will prioritize the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions within the planning of future transportation projects.

The commission adopted the new rules by a 10 to 1 vote with Commissioner Gary Beedy casting the lone vote. Beedy represents nine rural counties in northeastern Colorado.

Under the new rules, the state’s five regional planning districts will need to design highway and transit projects with modeling showing a reduction in the amount of greenhouse gas emissions, local air pollution, and vehicle miles traveled.

If the planning districts do not show a reduction, the state could redirect funding from traditional highway construction to more climate friendly investments such as mass transit, bike, or pedestrian infrastructure. The commission proposed the new rules as part of state legislation requiring the transportation department to address greenhouse gas emissions.

According to the Denver Post, CDOT was tasked with the changes as transportation related emissions are the leading cause of air pollution.

State Officials Call For New Measures To Address Fentanyl Overdoses

A coalition of state lawmakers, prosecutors, and law enforcement officials held a press conference yesterday calling for new legislation and other statewide measures to address Colorado’s surge in fentanyl related deaths.

The coalition, along with Attorney General Phil Weiser, is pushing for increased penalties against drug dealers who deliberately sell drugs containing fentanyl to unsuspecting consumers. The group is also calling for improved treatment options, public education campaigns, and resources to better equip law enforcement officials to investigate fentanyl-related deaths.

During the news conference, Weiser said the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment predicts the state’s drug overdose deaths from this year will not only break last year’s record but will double the toll of 2018.

According to the Colorado Health Institute, between 2019 and 2020,  the number of overdose deaths involving fentanyl more than doubled, from over 200 to over 500.

BVSD And SVVSD Monitoring Alleged Social Media Threats

The school districts of Boulder Valley and St. Vrain alerted families yesterday about the potential threat of school violence that is being circulated nationwide across social media.

A new TikTok challenge is encouraging students to bring weapons to schools today. The origin of the challenge is not known.

Both districts report that local law enforcement have not found any credible or local threats specific to the districts’ schools. The districts and local law enforcement are monitoring the situation.

Boulder County Announces Recipients Of Sustainability Grants

The Boulder County Commissioners announced yesterday the community recipients of the 2022 environmental sustainability grant program. Grant recipients include Boulder, Erie, Jamestown, Lafayette, Longmont, Louisville, Lyons, Nederland, and Superior.

According to the county’s press release, the county’s municipalities are pursuing projects and initiatives, including, but not limited to, assistance for small businesses to transition from styrofoam to environmental friendly takeout containers, renewable energy planning and solar projects, radon testing for homes, a climate vulnerability and risk mapping project, and water conservation rebates for citizens.

The matching grant program receives funding from the 2016 voter approved sustainability tax that supports sustainability-focused initiatives by cities and towns within Boulder County. Funding is proportionate to community population and municipalities must provide a 25% match to the grant amount requested.