Get Big Pivots

 

Polis administration says Colorado can indeed achieve  2030 GHG goals — by 2031

 

Colorado has a legislatively mandated target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions economy-wide 50% by 2030. A new report issued by the Polis administration on July 1 says the state is on track to achieve that goal by 2031.

The report, the sixth biannual update filed in accordance with a gubernatorial executive order, covers major events from January through June 2024.

Most notable was release of the updated Greenhouse Gas Pollution Reduction Roadmap in January. Also called Roadmap 2.0, the document identified 49 near-term actions that, if enacted or implemented, will result in Colorado hitting the 2030 target. They assume no further regulatory, legislative, or administration action is taken after 2026.

The latest report says that Gov. Jared Polis signed more than two-dozen bills into new laws covering land use, housing, and the electric grid that will cut emissions and also make Colorado more livable even in the warming climate.

 

Plenty of carrots for EVs

Coloradans purchasing or leasing an EV with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of less than $35,000 can qualify for $7,500 in state tax credits and the $7,500 federal tax credit. In other words, that’s a $20,000 car – assuming you have enough income for all those tax credits.

In April, state agencies awarded $21 million in grants for 290 fast-chargers at 46 locations across Colorado.

 

$450 discount of e-bikes

The Colorado Energy Office expects more than 10,000 e-bike purchases in 2024 as a result of a new $450 point-of-sale discount to all Coloradans purchasing a qualified e-bike from one of 100 participating retailers. A prior program for low- and moderate-income Coloradans supported 6,505 e-bike purchases over the last year.

 

Shifting from gas in buildings

The Public Utilities Commission in June issued a decision approving Xcel Energy’s gas-infrastructure plan. The plan sets a total investment of $383 million in the transition away from gas. That includes $310.5 million for direct incentives and rebates to help customers reduce gas use through energy efficiency and by switching to heat pumps to heat space and water. The plan also includes $10 million for recovered methane purchase, $30.5 million for market transformation projects, and $32 million to promote all-electric new construction.

 

Up to five community pilot projects

The report also notes a new law, HB24-1370, described by some in the Polis administration as among the most important in this session.

Unlike other energy and climate bills, some of which did not get introduced until the final days of the session, this bill, “Reduce Cost of Natural Gas,” was introduced on March 11. It has Xcel Energy working with the Colorado Energy Office and the PUC to identify up to five pilot communities to transition whole neighborhoods from gas service to affordable and low-carbon alternatives, including networked geothermal and all-electric heating and cooling.

The first deadline is April 2025, when the communities must be identified. By June 2026, the utility must propose at least one neighborhood-scale alternative project.

This bill provides an equitable and measured opportunity to test these alternatives at scale, while reducing utility expenditures on pipeline infrastructure.

Allen Best
Follow Me
Latest posts by Allen Best (see all)

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This