The Canary Initiative works closely with Aspen Electric and Energy Smart Colorado at the Community Office for Resource Efficiency (CORE) to help people improve energy efficiency of their homes and businesses and take advantage of rebates and incentives. Aspen is one of 50 communities that competed in a national energy efficiency competition called the Georgetown University Energy Prize, locally known as the Aspen Energy Challenge. The two-year competition ran for 2015 and 2016.We are currently awaiting results from Georgetown University. Learn more at the following links:
Aspen Energy Challenge
Aspen Electric Energy Efficiency
Energy Smart for Residents
Energy Smart for Businesses
Aspen is hosting the Climate Communities Summit this May 2017 which will be a gathering of Colorado mayors and elected officials. The event will consist of a series of presentations and workshops that will provide attendees with a platform to announce their commitments. This event is the first step to forming the Compact of Colorado Communities. The Compact will be a collection of commitments from Colorado towns, cities, and counties.
The Compact of Colorado Communities is an opportunity to showcase Colorado as a leader, while at the same time, catalyzing action towards larger climate goals. To learn more about the Compact and the Climate Communities Summit, click here.
The Aspen community is privileged to be the steward of vital and valuable natural and community resources. This first report gives an account of our collective stewardship: environmental protection, and economic and social prosperity. To learn more about the Sustainability Report, click here
To view the full report, click here.
If you have any general questions or feedback on the report or the economic sustainability section, please contact Linda Giudice via email
. If you have questions on the environmental sustainability section, please contact the City of Aspen's Environmental Health & Sustainability Department via email
As of 2015, the City of Aspen municipal electric utility now produces 100% of its energy from renewable resources, harnessing power from wind (53%), hydroelectric (46%), and landfill gas (1%). Over the next few years, more renewable sources will be added to the fuel mix to realize the maximum possible amount of carbon free energy while still meeting baseload needs. By investing in projects that avoid and offset carbon emissions, Aspen Electric is responsible for zero carbon emissions. This “avoid, reduce,offset” approach to addressing carbon emissions makes smart economic and environmental sense.
Canary staff are actively involved with the Aspen School District. Currently, Canary is working with the schools on several energy and transportation projects in efforts to reduce their carbon footprint.
In2004, the City of Aspen calculated its baseline community-wide emissions inventory. Updates were completed using 2007, 2011, and 2014 data. Emissions inventories will be updated approximately every three years to inform the community on its progress in meeting 2020 emissions reduction goals and to inform future policies and programs to address carbon emissions. The City of Aspen's Climate Action Plan is currently being updated based on the most recent inventory.
Greenhouse Gas Inventory Reports
The City of Aspen government tracks its internal emissions annually, including emissions related to electricity and natural gas use in City-occupied and/or City-owned buildings and other facilities/operations (e.g. water pumps), as well as, emissions related to ground transportation and air travel. The City as an entity is given a greenhouse gas emissions budget, which decreases by about 2% per year. From 2004 to 2014, the City government reduced its internal emissions by 42% (surpassing the target of 30% for 2014).
Aspen's City Council adopted a Climate Action Plan in 2007 to address the effects of climate change in Aspen and to offer solutions. As this plan expired in 2009, the City of Aspen is currently in the process of updating Aspen's Climate Action Plan. This updated plan will serve as a guiding document to reach our greenhouse gas reduction goals of 30% by 2020, and 80% by 2050.
The City of Aspen supports the use of Electric Vehicles (EV) by offering informational resources on EV options and charging locations throughout town. To learn more about how Aspen support EVs, and to find a charging station, click here.
The City of Aspen Green Team is an internal engagement opportunity for City staff to learn about environmental topics and to participate in events that help protect our environment.
As an ongoing effort, the City of Aspen supports the Citizens' Climate Lobby. In addition, the City is a member of the Mountain Pact, a group of mountain communities working together to address the impacts of climate change.
Citizens' Climate Lobby
This alliance consists of a group of representatives from several local non-profit and government entities in the valley, including City of Aspen's Canary Initiative, working together on climate issues.
In addition to Canary's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Aspen, the City of Aspen and Canary Initiative are also planning and preparing for a different climate in the future. For more information, visit Our Future Aspen.
Please email Canary@cityofaspen.com or call 970.429.1798 with any questions about the Canary Initiative or about our programs listed above.