The Basalt Green Team

About the Green Team

The purpose of the Basalt Green Team is to advocate for a more resilient and sustainable Basalt. The Green Team sponsors projects throughout Basalt that promote waste reduction, improve energy efficiency, decrease greenhouse gas emissions, and promote sustainability.

The Green Team was originally formed in 2007 after a group of citizens attended the Sonoran Institute’s 2007 Community Energy Futures Institute Workshop in Grand Junction. The Team has accomplished many goals throughout the years, some of which include:

  • Winning the Colorado Ski Town Bag Challenge - the prize enabled the installation of photovoltaic panels at the Basalt Middle School;
  • Obtaining grants which enabled the installation of hot water collectors and photovoltaic panels at the Arbaney pool;
  • Installation of the micro-hydro facility adjacent to the Town’s water treatment facility;
  • Creation of the Green Events Checklist which was adopted by the Town Council;
  • Participation in the Waste Free Roaring Fork, which led to the successful bag reduction ordinances in Carbondale and Aspen. This was initially adopted by Town Council, but later overturned in a referendum;
  • The yearly leaf drop/composting program - a free service that diverts yard waste from the landfill;
  • Supporting the ordinance to limit idling within the Town of Basalt to two minutes; 
  • Supporting amendments to the Town’s Lighting Code and Sustainable Building Regulations; and
  • Obtaining a grant for the installation of a dc Fast Charger electric vehicle charger at Town Hall.

Current Projects

Basalt Solar Project.  The Town recognizes the importance clean energy plays in supporting resiliency, sustainability, and in meeting Basalt's climate action goals.  After a competitive bid process the Town contracted with McKinstry to perform a viability analysis of potential solar energy sites within the Town of Basalt.  The analysis concluded with five sites where solar offset would provide significant cost and energy savings, including the Basalt Elementary School, two areas at the Basalt High School, the bus barn in El Jebel, and the Basalt Public Works building off of East Valley Road, near Highway 82.  Combined, the five solar sites are expected to provide a 34% energy use reduction and save 181 metric tons of carbon annually.  The project is set for implementation in the first quarter of 2023.  

Basalt Incentives Rebate Program.  Town is partnering with CORE and Holy Cross Energy on a rebate program to incentivize home retrofit projects that lead to reductions in energy use and greenhouse gas emissions.  Basalt residents can receive up to 3x rebates for qualifying projects.  More information on the Basalt Rebate Incentives Program can be found here at https://aspencore.org/basalt-triple-rebates/. The program will run through September 30, 2022 or until the limited funds have been claimed.  

Tracking Greenhouse Gas Emissions.  The Town has received the most recent Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory Report which examines data in carbon-emitting categories from the years 2019 and 2020.  This report is typically released every three years, with the baseline report completed and the first update in 2017.  When examining data for the current report, the consultants Lotus Engineering & Sustainability felt that to provide a more accurate picture, the 2019 data would be included in the report.  The 2020 data showed a decrease in carbon emissions related to the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions, and were not representative of "business as usual".  The summary report can be found here, and the long form report is available here.  

8 Simple ways to reduce energy and save $

1. Sign up for an energy assessment for your home or business at www.aspencore.org.

2. Improve the energy efficiency of your space (home, business or public building).  Contact Sara Nadolny at the Town of Basalt (sara.nadolny@basalt.net) to discuss how easy it is to conduct a blower test for your building and air sealing that can make a huge difference in comfort and cost savings.

3. Increase your mix of renewable electricity by enrolling in the Purchase Renewable Energy (PuRE) program at https://www.holycross.com/pure/.

4. Support sustainable energy sources.  Tell your elected officials that you want more renewable energy projects in your community.

5. Be conscious of the emissions related to your actions, knowing that if we all take steps they add up.  This could include taking RFTA, carpooling, Basalt Connect, or WE-Cycle for transportation.

6. Compost!  This is a fantastic way to keep organic materials from the landfill.  Learn more about local composting services through https://evergreenzerowaste.com/ or https://www.mountainwaste.com/service/compost-collection/.

7. Be savvy - don’t contaminate!  Learn about your local recycling and composting programs - what can be recycled or composted, and what will cause a load to be landfilled due to contamination.  Remember, when in doubt, throw it out!  

8. Stay informed and engaged!  The Basalt Green Team is seeking additional members.  See Membership below.

Climate Action Plan 

The Town Council formally adopted the Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community with the Basalt Addendum in February 2017 via Resolution No. 6, Series of 2017. The purpose of the Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community is to aggressively reduce greenhouse gas emissions with reduction targets of 25% by 2025, and 80% by 2050. Since its completion, the Climate Action Plan for the Eagle County Community has been adopted by the towns of Avon, Basalt, Eagle, Minturn, and Vail, and by the Western Eagle County Metropolitan Recreation District. 

The Basalt Addendum furthers the goals of the Plan through six strategies, as recommended by the Green Team, including:

  1. Adopting a goal of 100% clean energy by 2030
  2. Engaging in regional, state and national advocacy
  3. Enforcement and development of policy and code
  4. Municipal energy efficiency
  5. Community outreach, engagement and education
  6. Annual progress reports and assessment

Recent News 

In 2018 the Town of Basalt adopted changes to its Sustainable Building Regulations (SBRs), with the inclusion of a continuing education requirement.  The Green Team is currently bringing additional amendments to the SBRs to the Town Council for consideration.  More information can be found under the Building Department webpage, including free training opportunities for building professionals that require continuing education credits.

The Town of Basalt is proud to stand with other local communities as leaders in the reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and other climate change reduction measures. With the recommendation of the Green Team, the Basalt Town Council recently approved the Town’s membership into the Colorado Communities for Climate Action.

  • Colorado Communities for Climate Action (CC4CA) is a coalition of local governments that advocates for state and federal policies to protect Colorado’s climate for current and future generations. CC4CA has retained Frontline Public Affairs to represent the group’s interests before the General Assembly and other state and federal offices. There are currently 20 total members, which include 15 cities/town and 5 counties across Colorado. More information on CC4CA can be found at http://cc4ca.  Members have recently adopted and ratified the 2019/2020 Policy Statement, which can be viewed here.

Membership

Basalt Green Team members are appointed by Town Council. The Team traditionally has approximately seven members, although there is no officially designated number of seats. The Green Team meets on the second Monday of every month, from 3:30 - 5:00 p.m. Members should live or work within the the Town’s limits.  If you are interested in joining this committee, please contact Staff Planner Sara Nadolny at sara.nadolny@basalt.net for more information.

Highlights

The Basalt Green Team works towards its goals with the help of area partners, including the following:

  • Communities Offices for Resource Efficiency, commonly known as CORE, is a non-profit based out of the Aspen and Carbondale, whose mission is to work cooperatively with businesses, individuals, utilities and government entities to create measurable improvements in energy and water efficiency. CORE provides the Green Team with significant administrative and technical support. More information on CORE may be found at the Aspen CORE website.