Sign On: Letter to Governor Polis Demanding Climate Emergency Declaration and Swift Action on the COGCC and CDPHE

Jared Polis - Governor of Colorado, Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment

We call on the Governor to take immediate action to address widespread public concern that in the two years since SB 19-181 and HB 19-1261 were signed into law, the situation with regards to oil and gas pollution and the impacts on Colorado communities and the climate crisis has failed to improve as needed. It is time to declare a climate emergency and call on state agencies to act accordingly.

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To: Jared Polis - Governor of Colorado, Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment
From: [Your Name]

Given the state of our Climate is already in crisis, we, the coalition United for Colorado’s Climate hereby demand that Governor Jared Polis, chief executive of the state of Colorado, use the authorities granted his office to:

1) Issue an executive order declaring a climate emergency for the state of Colorado that:
a) Recognizes that all of today's inhabitants of Colorado reside on the
unceded territory of over 48 indigenous tribes and nations — the
traditional stewards of these lands.
b) Recognizes the urgency of this crisis, generations in the making,
with a short window of opportunity remaining as our Earth’s
climate and biosphere are being irreversibly disrupted.
c) Recognizes our state’s water resources are in peril, that the
Colorado River has declined precipitously, and that aridification of
the West under extreme drought leads to mega wildfires and a
runaway trajectory of warming.
d) Recognizes the disproportionate burdens borne by generations of
black, brown, indigenous, and communities of color as a result of
environmental racism and settler colonialism.
e) Recognizes the need to center restorative justice and
environmental cleanup first and foremost on disproportionately
impacted communities.
f) Recognizes the undue burden to our youth and future
generations, whose ability to live and prosper will be directly
impacted by the decisions and actions we take today.
g) Implements science-based policies commensurate with the scale
of the crisis to prevent further warming and pollution of our
h) Acknowledges continued permitting of oil and gas drilling and
pollution ruins our air, water, and the livability of our communities
and those around the world. This is a human rights violation. 
i) Recognizes that under human rights law, Colorado has an
obligation to act to prevent the impacts of climate change, to
mitigate its effects, and to ensure that everyone has the capacity to
adapt to the climate crisis.

2) Issue executive orders and work with the legislature as necessary to require the COGCC, CDPHE, and other relevant executive branch agencies to develop a comprehensive plan to phase out fossil fuel production in Colorado by 2030; including the following intermediate steps: 
a) A joint report from the CDPHE and COGCC by no later than July 1st,
2022 with a concrete plan to address cumulative impacts of fossil
fuel extraction, as required by SB19-181.
b) Deny new permits for fossil fuel extraction in counties that have
already warmed more than 1.5 °C, disproportionately impacted
communities and EPA ozone nonattainment areas. 
c) Site-specific 24-hour monitoring of both greenhouse gases (GHG)
and toxic air pollution from all major point sources, with systems for
real- time alerting of surrounding communities about any release of
air toxics in excess of air quality standards. 
d) Periodic aerial or satellite monitoring of area emissions, as well as
ground based detection systems capable of discriminating volatile
organic compounds (VOCs) and other air pollutants from oil and gas
operations — that warm the climate and exacerbate poor air quality
— with this information made available online to the public in real
e) Adopt state standards for dangerous pollution such as benzene and
develop effective public warning systems and a shutdown of
operations when monitoring shows that these standards have been
f) Require operators to submit environmental impact statements that
include the social cost of carbon, emissions during production and
end- use burning of these fossil fuels. 
g) Account and take responsibility for life-cycle GHG emissions from
exported oil and gas produced in Colorado in the state’s climate
goals mandated by HB19-1261.
h) Require all regulatory bodies to prioritize public health, safety and
the environment by rejecting all permit applications that do not
align with our state’s climate and clean air goals.
i) Disallow any oil or gas drilling application with
variances/waivers/exceptions for the 2000-foot setback from
residences, businesses, water sources and wildlife habitats.

3) Issue executive orders and work with legislature as needed to ensure the rapid decarbonization of Colorado’s electricity generation sector, as a necessary precursor to electrify and decarbonize the state’s transportation, buildings, and manufacturing sectors; achieving the following benchmarks:
a) 80% electricity sector GHG emissions reduction from a 2005
baseline by 2025.
b) 98% electricity sector GHG emissions reduction from a 2005
baseline by 2030.
c) Closure of all coal-fired electric generation facilities by 2025.
d) A just transition for communities and workers impacted by
retirement of the state’s oil and gas industry, not just the coal
e) Prioritization for renewable energy assets that replace fossil
generation located in frontline and disproportionately impacted


350 CO
Accelerate Neighborhood Climate Action
Adams County Communities for Drilling Accountability Now
Be The Change
Broomfield CAN
Broomfield Concerned: A Coalition of Neighbors
Broomfield Health and Safety First
Businesses for a Livable Climate
Call to Action Colorado
Capitol Heights Presbyterian
CatholicNetwork US
Center for Biological Diversity
Citizens for a Healthy Community
Clean Energy Action
Collective for Another World
Colorado Coalition for a Livable Climate
Colorado Coalition for a Livable Climate
Colorado Latino Forum
Colorado Renewable Energy Society
Colorado Rising
Denver Democratic Socialists of America
Denver Metro Climate Reality
Empower our Future
Erie Protectors
Fort Collins Sustainability Group
Green Latinos
I-70 Citizens Advisory Group
Indivisible Ambassadors
Indivisible Colorado
Indivisible Colorado Environment
Indivisible Front Range Resistance
Jane Potts INC
Families for a Future
Larimer Alliance
Mayfair Park Neighborhood Association Board
Mental Health and Inclusion Ministries
Montbello Neighborhood Improvement Association
Mothers Out Front
North Range Concerned Citizens
Northern Colorado Community Rights Network
Our Revolution Metro Denver
Rapid Shift Network
Resilient Denver
Safe and Healthy Colorado
Save EPA
Sierra Club of Colorado
Small Business Alliance
SmogFree Denver
The Green House Connection Center
Together Against Neighborhood Drilling
Wall of Women
Weld Air and Water
Western Slope Businesses for a Livable Climate
WildEarth Guardians
Womxn From the Mountain