Stop slush: skiers for Amendment 37 |

Stop slush: skiers for Amendment 37

Chris DavenportAspen

I like to ski. A lot. I want winter to come early and stay late. I want mountains of snow, delivered fresh every night, and if I had my druthers, I’d start skiing on Halloween and finish up around the Fourth of July.Unfortunately, it seems that lately summer has been getting the upper hand. You know that feeling in your gut that says winter ain’t like it used to be? Well, it turns out that that queasy feeling didn’t come from a bad burrito: Records show that 19 of the 20 hottest years ever recorded have been since 1980. Global warming, I’m afraid, is at hand. And for the really bad news: Scientists say that shifts in temperature will affect alpine areas in the northern hemisphere first, and if current trends continue, the ski industry in the Rocky Mountain region could be essentially gone by mid-century.The culprit here is no big secret – it is fossil fuels. And in the U.S., fossil-fuel electricity generation is the single largest generator of greenhouse gases. Clean, emission-free, renewable energy sources like wind and solar exist; it’s just a matter of using them.Luckily, Coloradans now have a chance to become part of the solution. Amendment 37, on the ballot Nov. 2, would require local utilities to gradually increase their usage of renewable energy, from the current 2 percent to 10 percent by 2015. Fifteen states across the country, including energy hogs like Texas and New York, have similar programs. It is time for Colorado, with so much at stake, to do its share.The Colorado Farm Bureau supports Amendment 37 because wind energy spurs rural development. Business groups support the measure because independent analyses predict reduced electricity prices over the long run. Environmental groups support Amendment 37 because it prevents air pollution.And I support it because I like to ski.If you support rural economic development, buy electricity, like to breathe clean air or ski, you should too. Please, vote yes on Amendment 37.

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