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Talking Green: 2018 focus on local climate change

Article adapted from the Steamboat Pilot 

talkinggreen

Written by Sarah Jones, Yampa Valley Sustainability Council

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — Talking Green is the Yampa Valley Sustainability Council (YVSC) adult education series focused on relevant and timely environmental topics. Through this free program, YVSC provides community members with information about sustainable technologies, practices and products, tools to live more sustainably, and opportunities to take action to protect our environment.

Since the program started in April 2008, more than 5,400 adults have learned how to integrate sustainability into their lives because of Talking Green events. The wide variety of topics and presentation formats attracts a new audience at every event. For example, in 2017, topics included reducing food waste, anaerobic digestion, residential water efficiency, permaculture gardening, the future of coal, tiny homes and more.

Last month was Colorado’s warmest November on record, and our state is 2 degrees warmer. We are seeing the impacts of this climate change locally — shorter snow-season length, earlier spring runoff and hotter, drier summers. Our high-mountain environment is clearly more vulnerable now than ever before.

In 2018, YVSC is stepping up our efforts to mobilize our community to address climate change locally. We are excited to announce that four Talking Green events in 2018 will feature high-profile climate change speakers from outside the region to inspire our community to take action.

We will be kicking off the new year with a screening of “Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 8, 2018, in partnership with Bud Werner Memorial Library. “Inconvenient Sequel”follows former U.S. Vice President Al Gore’s continued work to fight climate change and his global efforts to persuade governmental leaders to invest in renewable energy.

Closely following, mark your calendar for 5:30 p.m. Jan. 23, 2018, at Bud Werner Memorial Library when CSU professor Scott Denning will present “Climate Change: Simple, Serious, Solvable.” A dynamic, sought-after speaker who makes climate science accessible — and even sometimes humorous — Dr. Denning is Monfort Professor of Atmospheric Science at CSU and is known for his research into atmosphere-biosphere interactions and atmospheric carbon dioxide. If you are feeling despondent about climate change, Dr. Denning will give you hope.

Additional presentations for the 2018 Talking Green lineup include the impacts of climate change on the ski industry by Protect our Winters (POW), the global transformation of energy and transportation by Kevin Brehm of the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI), and a primer on climate action by a trained citizen activist from the Climate Reality Leadership Corps, founded by Al Gore.

Interactive events are also part of YVSC’s Talking Green program and 2018 will include a tour of Innovative Ag’s local microgreen, edible flower and mushroom-growing operation, a screening of “Wasted! The Story of Food Waste” (in partnership with Bud Werner Memorial Library), a tour of Twin Enviro Services’ recycling processing facility at the Milner landfill, an electric vehicle ride ‘n’ drive, and YVSC’s annual Sustainable Homes Tour.

Please visit yvsc.org after Jan. 1, 2018, for the detailed schedule of 2018 Talking Green events and join us to learn more and take action to preserve the Yampa Valley environment we all treasure.