Colorado Environmental Education Plan

The Colorado Legislature passed HB10-1131 in 2010, which required the State Board of Education to adopt a plan for teaching Colorado's young people about natural resources and the environment.  You can read the plan, which was adopted in 2012, at the Colorado Environmental Education Plan (CEEP) website.  On this site you can also find links to teacher resources, activities, kid-friendly events at State Parks, and other reasources.


Energy and Sustainability at the Capitol

Earlier this month the CU Denver Business School hosted a forum on energy sustainability in historic buildings.  The forum was held in the Colorado State Capitol Building as a living example of the points made in the forum.  Colorado's Capitol is the first LEED-certified state capitol building in the nation.  At the forum, speakers such as Gov. John Hickenlooper and Sen. Mark Udall discussed how updating the Capitol with geothermal energy has saved the state more than $8 million in utility costs and has offset more than 91 million pounds of carbon emissions.  For more on the Capitol's energy efficiency and sustainability, see the document Energy Use at the Capitol from the Colorado Energy Office.

Solar panels on the State Capitol roof.  Courtesy Colorado Energy Office.


Colorado Cares Day

Americorps Colorado and the Governor's Commission on Community Service are sponsoring the 15th Annual Colorado Cares Day this Saturday, July 27.  Held annually on the Saturday closest to Colorado Day (August 1), Colorado Cares Day offers opportunities to get involved with service projects across the state.  If you're interested in helping serve your community on Colorado Cares Day, you can register your project or find ideas for where to volunteer by visiting this page.  Whatever your interest, there are volunteer opportunities available for you.  Some examples of projects that are recruiting volunteers for Saturday, and are being sponsored by the State of Colorado, include the Hep C Connection, Bluff Lake Nature Center, The Butterfly Pavilion, Denver Hospice, National MS Society, Aurora Water, and Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado.  Finally, for information on past years' service projects, see the Colorado Cares Day Annual Report, available from our library.


Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development

The University of Colorado at Boulder's Center for the Study and Prevention of Violence has released a new online tool for matching youth with development programs based on their individual needs.  The site, Blueprints for Healthy Youth Development, features a step-by-step program selector that parents, educators, and youth can use to find programs for needs such as behavioral, educational, emotional, physical, and positive relationships.  The site also features tools to assess children's needs, information on positive school climate, a list of resources, and more.  The website is co-sponsored by the Annie E. Casey Foundation.  To find out more, see the University's press release.


I-70/Pecos Bridge Move

This past Saturday, spectators lined up to see the newly-constructed, 2,400-ton Pecos Street Bridge move into place.  The bridge was constructed away from its future site in order to minimize traffic impact on I-70.  You can view video of the bridge move here.  The bridge will be complete and ready to open sometime in late August or early September. For more information, see the Colorado Dept. of Transportation (CDOT)'s press release and project webpage, which includes photos and diagrams of the bridge, fact sheets, and detour information.


Oil and Gas Resources

One of the specialties of the University of Colorado Law School is natural resources law, and the School's Getches-Wilkinson Center for Natural Resources, Energy, and the Environment is sponsoring the Intermountain Oil and Gas BMP Project.  The Project's website features a helpful resources page on their website that includes information on oil and gas development, GIS, reclamation, hydraulic fracturing (or fracking), coalbed methane, air and water quality, effects on wildlife and vegetation, and much more.  Each topic includes background articles and links on the topic.  This website is a great place to start for anyone researching the development, best management practices, and environmental effects of oil and gas in Colorado.


New Audit Report, Medical Marijuana Regulatory System

An article in today's Denver Post discusses a new state audit on the regulation of medical marijuana, but fails to give a link to the audit -- so here is the link.  The audit report looks at the how well the Colorado Dept. of Public Health & Environment (CDPHE) and the Colorado Dept. of Revenue are overseeing medical marijuana in Colorado, and provides recommendations.  This is actually Part II of this audit; Part I was released in March.  For more information on medical marijuana in Colorado, see the Colorado Legislative Council's Issue Brief.  You can also find information at the CDPHE's Colorado Medical Marijuana Registry Homepage and at the Colorado Dept. of Revenue's Marijuana Enforcement Division website.


Denver Inside & Out

Our capital city has a rich history with many colorful characters and stories.  Some of these stories have been combined into a volume from History Colorado and the University Press of Colorado, entitled Denver Inside and Out.  Here you can find stories on Denver's railroads, schools, hospitals, women, religious and ethnic groups, recreation, and the environment.  For more fascinating stories on Denver's history, check our web catalog for more books from History Colorado and the University Press of Colorado. 


Circulation of Petitions

Right now, many people are out circulating petitions for November ballot initiatives.  If you're one of them, be aware of the State's rules for petition circulation.  The Secretary of State's Office has a handy online training guide that all petitioners should read before hitting the streets.  The guide includes information on who may circulate petitions, compensation information, rules for who may sign the petition, and more.  Alternatively, if you're the one being asked to sign a petition, read the Instructions for Petition Signers section of the guide before you sign anything.  This short section includes dos and don'ts for signers, how to correct mistakes, how to sign for a disabled voter, and more.  Finally, if you want to circulate or sign a petition but are not a registered voter, you can register to vote online


Own Your Future Colorado: Resource for Ex-Offenders

With approximately 10,000 inmates being released from prison each year,* reducing recidivism is a large priority for our state.  One of the best ways to reduce recidivism is through obtaining an education.  So this month Lt. Governor Joe Garcia announced the launch of a new initiative known as Own Your Future Colorado.  According to the initiative's website,

Own Your Future is the one-stop resource for building a
new life after prison. You'll find the tools and information
you need to create a plan to own your future.

If you are an ex-offender or work with ex- or soon-to-be-released offenders, this site is a helpful way to plan for work, school and life "on the outside." 

The site also notes:
Own Your Future is dedicated to the memory of Tom Clements, to honor his unwavering commitment to reducing recidivism and his strong belief in second chances.


New Website for Colorado Watering Restriction Information

Are you confused by your local watering restrictions, which keep changing based on the state's drought conditions?  Fortunately, the Colorado Water Conservation Board has eliminated this confusion by introducing a single, centralized website with information on watering restrictions for all Colorado customers.  Simply go to the website, http://www.coh2o.co/, and search by city, county, or zip code to find out your local watering rules.  There's much more on the site, too -- including a drought meter, information on maintaining healthy landscapes during drought, and information on snowpack and reservoir storage.



Colorado's 10 Winnable Battles

The Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment has initiated a campaign to address Colorado's "10 Winnable Battles" against health and environmental problems facing our state.  The Department is working towards achieving measurable results in these ten areas.  The 10 Winnable Battles that CDPHE has identified are:

1.  Clean Air
2.  Clean Water
3.  Infectious Disease Prevention
4.  Injury Prevention
5.  Mental Health and Substance Abuse
6.  Obesity
7.  Oral Health
8.  Safe Food
9.  Tobacco
10. Unintended Pregnancy

For more information on the campaign along with Colorado-specific fact sheets on each of these areas, visit the 10 Winnable Battles webpage.  Reports and other in-depth information on each of these topics is available from our library; visit our web catalog to search for publications.


Colorado Has a New State Park!

Colorado's newest State Park opened to the public on May 21.  Staunton State Park in Jefferson County offers hiking trails, terrific scenery, and a waterfall.  Frances Hornbook Staunton donated 1,720 acres of her land to Colorado State Parks in 1986.  Over the years, parcels were added to make up the current 3,828-acre Staunton State Park, including 510 acres from the Elk Falls Ranch; the 1,000-acre Davis Ranch, and the 80-acre parcel that once belonged to Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Mary Coyle Chase.  Popular features of the Park include the Davis Ponds for fishing and the 10-mile round-trip hike to Elk Falls Overlook, featuring a waterfall.  For more information on Staunton State Park, including hours, fees, directions, facilities, and activities, click here.

Photo courtesy Colorado Parks & Wildlife


Demography Map Gallery

The Colorado State Demography Office has added a new Map Gallery to their website.  The gallery features maps with census information, poverty data, household income, state-to-state migration, and more.  The maps are interactive and customizable.  The gallery also includes several apps which, according to the Demography Office,
  • "Compare 2010 Census vs 2000 Census with a simple "swipe" interface
  • View individual subject webmaps for Poverty and Income
  • Access data visualizations for County and State Migration, as well as an animation of Colorado County Population over time
  • An easy to understand guide to get you started
  • And more!"

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