FRISCO — Neighborhoods looking to reduce wildfire threats can now apply for grants under a state program that will disburse a total of $5.2 million for projects that reduce the risk for damage to property, infrastructure, and water supplies, and those that limit the likelihood of wildfires spreading into populated areas.
Governor says state must figure out a way to address impending shortages
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado water experts will try to figure out how to manage the state’s most precious resource in an era when all signs points to increasing shortages and the potential for growing conflicts within the state and the region over its allocation.
Under an executive order issued this week by Gov. John Hickenlooper, the Colorado Water Conservation Board will lead the effort to address the growing gap between supply and demand. Especially worrisome is the gap in the South Platte Basin, the state’s most populous and at the same time, the most productive agricultural basin.
Mike Lester says Colorado forests face ‘extraordinary changes’
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado’s new state forester and director of the Colorado State Forest Service may be moving here from Pennsylvania, but his forestry roots are pure Colorado.
Mike Lester is a CSU alumnus and spent time with the Rocky Mountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. He currently serves as assistant state forester for the Pennsylvania Bureau of Forestry, a position in which he is responsible for more than 300 staff, manages 2 million acres of state forest land, oversees the Pennsylvania State nursery manager, and manages a silviculture program that yields $25 million in annual revenues.
As Colorado state forester, Lester is responsible for the protection of Colorado’s forest resources; ensuring forestry education, outreach and technical assistance to private landowners; and carrying out the duties of the Division of Forestry within the Colorado Department of Natural Resources. Continue reading “Colorado gets new state forester”→
Energy boom contributes to regional haze problems and potential health impacts
By Bob Berwyn
FRISCO — Colorado officials took another small step to address growing public concerns about the impacts of the state’s energy boom by announcing a $1.3 million study of emissions from oil and gas drilling operations.
According to a press release from the Colorado Department of Natural Resources, the study will help provide information about how oil and gas emissions behave, how they travel and their characteristics in areas along the northern Front Range.
A second phase would assess possible health effects using data collected in the first phase. Testimony at this week’s Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission rulemaking hearing reinforced the views of experts for both industry and the conservation community that more and better science is needed related to oil and gas emissions. Continue reading “Colorado: State to study drilling emissions”→
Third-year La Niña could spell trouble for state, officials warn in latest drought outlook
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — A drought outlook for Colorado issued March 28 offered a gloomy outlook for the spring and summer unless weather conditions turn around drastically in the next few weeks.
Even worse, state water experts said there’s still a greater than 40 percent chance that La Niña could stretch into a third year. Three-year La Niñas are associated with some of the driest periods on record, according to the update issues by the Colorado Department of Natural Resources. Continue reading “Colorado: Headed for drought?”→
SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado big game over-the-counter hunting licenses for deer and elk are available starting today at more than 730 authorized locations around the state. A capped number of over-the-counter licenses for black bear are also going on sale at that time. The licenses can be picked up in person or ordered by phone.
For elk hunters who missed the draw or failed to draw their first choice, over-the-counter elk licenses offer the opportunity to hunt bull or cow elk during the archery season or bull elk during the second and third rifle seasons in many game management units in Colorado.
Colorado’s elk population is larger than any other herd in North America. With roughly 283,000 elk, 23 million acres of public land and elk seasons that run from August through January, Colorado offers a tremendous variety of hunting opportunity. Last year, more than half of the bull elk harvested in Colorado were taken by archery and rifle hunters with over-the-counter tags. Continue reading “Colorado: Walk-up big-game hunting licenses on sale”→
Veteran resource manager should help ease transition woes
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper sidestepped any potential friction over who will head the newly combined Colorado Division of Wildlife and Colorado State Parks by picking a well-respected U.S. Forest Service leader to head the new division and its 800 employees.
Rick Cables, who has served as Rocky Mountain Regional Forester since 2001, will take over in early July.