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Climate Progress at the Public Utilities Commission

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Photo Credit: Arapahoe Basin

Colorado Ski Country USA (CSCUSA) is a membership trade association made up of 22 ski areas across Colorado that works on behalf of its membership in the areas of communications, marketing and public policy.

Climate change and its impacts to the industry are a major policy focus of the organization at the state and federal level. In recent years, CSCUSA has increased its work at the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), which regulates utilities in Colorado. CSCUSA’s work at the PUC has focused on expanding renewable energy, reducing emission from the transportation sector and incentives for businesses to continue to reduce emissions. These measures will help ski areas meet their own carbon reduction goals and put Colorado on a path towards meeting its statewide carbon reduction goals.

Over the past three years CSCUSA has participated in PUC hearings concerning Xcel Energy, Tri-State Energy, energy planning, community solar gardens, transmission line planning and electric vehicles to name a few.

Below are some of the recent positive PUC decisions:

  • Commitments by all the major utilities in Colorado to reduce carbon emissions 80% below 2005 levels by 2030
  • Expansion of renewable energy projects to meet these goals- including large wind, solar and solar with battery storage projects
  • Support for expanding electric vehicle charging infrastructure to address consumer’s range anxiety concerns and speed reduction in carbon emissions from the transportation sector, which is now Colorado’s largest source of carbon emissions
  • Exploration of programs to help communities and businesses meet their carbon reduction goals more quickly like Xcel Energy’s Renewable*Connect program
  • Support for wildfire mitigation efforts

While there has been major progress made in recent years, CSCUSA and its ski areas will continue to work at the PUC to help our members meet their goals and reduce carbon emissions.