FCSG Statement on 2018 Fort Collins Climate Action Plan Results

When the City of Fort Collins reports that community-wide greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are 14% below 2005 levels (1), there should be a big asterisk at the end of the sentence. That’s because the City ignores emissions of fluorinated gases, such as sulfur hexafluoride (SF6), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), and perfluorocarbons (PFCs). One company located in Fort Collins – Broadcom (formerly Avago Technologies) – emits huge quantities of these gases, mainly SF6. Astoundingly, Broadcom’s fluorinated gas emissions make it the largest single GHG emitter in the City (2). Since the contribution of fluorinated gases (also known as “F-gases”) is generally much smaller…

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FCSG Statement on Progress Toward Meeting Fort Collins’ CAP Goals

Fort Collins City councilmembers discussed progress made toward meeting the community’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction goals during their work session on Tuesday, July 23rd. While the final numbers for 2018 won’t be available for another month, here is what we do know: 1. Trends in the electric and natural gas sectors – which together accounted for over 70% of reported community GHG emissions in 2017 – suggest that it will likely be difficult for Fort Collins to meet its 2020 emission reduction goal. 2. If the City were to count GHG emissions from one large industrial emitter (Broadcom), our…

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Proposed Climate Emergency Resolution

Extinction Rebellion Fort Collins (XR FC) and the Fort Collins Sustainability Group (FCSG) are calling on the City of Fort Collins to declare a Climate Emergency. We have submitted a resolution to City Council that would do just that. The resolution would also a) direct City staff to establish future reviews of the City’s 2030 and 2050 climate goals, b) direct City staff to include representatives of indigenous communities displaced from Northern Colorado on the Climate Action Plan Community Advisory Committee, c) direct City staff to educate the community about the climate crisis, and d) call on other governments and…

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Climate Crisis Demands Both Mitigation and Adaptation

Published in the Fort Collins Coloradoan on June 18, 2019 Larimer County Commissioner John Kefalas is to be commended for recognizing that we are in a climate crisis (“Climate crisis demands planning and resiliency”, May 30th, 2019). As Kefalas points out, Colorado’s average temperature has increased by 2 degrees F in the past 30 years, and is projected to increase another 2.5 to 5 degrees F by 2050. In this context, it is welcome news that Larimer County’s proposed 20-year Comprehensive Plan incorporates actions to increase community resilience. However, Kefalas is not correct to say that today’s extreme weather is…

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Colorado Should Set Bold Climate Change Goals

Published in the Colorado Independent on April 2, 2019 The Colorado General Assembly soon will consider establishing additional climate goals for our state. The bill, HB19-1261, would set goals of a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and a 90% emissions reduction by 2050, both compared to 2005 levels. The bill also reaffirms the goal set by Gov. John Hickenlooper before he left office: a 26% emissions reduction by 2025. While the new goals might sound ambitious, the Colorado Coalition for a Livable Climate (CCLC) is calling for the 2030 goal to be strengthened – instead of 50%…

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Reflections on the Notion of Sustainability

Since its inception in 2005, the Fort Collins Sustainability Group (FCSG) has focused on local climate policy. More specifically, we have advocated for City initiatives that would both reduce our community’s greenhouse gas emissions and help our community adapt to climate change. For a detailed history of the work in which we have been engaged, see the article “The FCSG Story” We subscribe to a notion of sustainability aligned with that set forth in the 1987 Brundtland Report, which states that “Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to…

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