Aspen Skiing Co. employees donate $90,000 to ‘green’ projects
ASPEN, Colorado – The Aspen Skiing Co. employee’s Environment Foundation donated $90,000 this spring to environmental projects ranging from a local school’s organic garden to a study on the consequences of oil shale extraction.The Environment Foundation is supported voluntarily by Skico employees. This spring it gave the $90,000 to 13 projects. The grants were:$9,000 to Roaring Fork Outdoor Volunteers for summer trail projects at Maroon Lake, Arbaney-Kittle and Wulfsohn Mountain Park;$10,000 to Western Resource Advocates to analyze the impacts of commercial-scale oil shale leasing on Western Slope water resources;$1,100 to the Roaring Fork School District to help pay a staff person to coordinate energy savings projects to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce energy use;$28,000 to Solara Preschool to help with installation of a 5.4-kilowatt solar system;$8,000 to the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies to help with staff salaries and operating costs;$10,000 to Western Colorado Congress to support development of its Quarter Century Fund, a reserve available when other funding has been committed but not received;$4,000 to the Colorado Fourteeners Initiative to fund a Roaring Fork Valley-based peak ranger program that will adopt the newly completed Pyramid Peak Trail;$10,000 to the Rocky Mountain Climate Organization to help develop a statewide coalition of nonprofit, for-profit and government entities to advocate on behalf of adoption of elements of a Colorado Climate Action Plan to reduce greenhouse gases in the state;$3,000 to Waldorf School of the Roaring Fork to create an organic vegetable garden;$10,000 to Wilderness Workshop to help with the Hidden Gems Wilderness Campaign, which aims to add 600,000 acres of wilderness to the White River National Forest;$4,000 to Roaring Fork Mountain Bike Association to help with its formation- the association will work on a valleywide trails plan;$3,000 to the town of New Castle to explore the impact of a revised code on energy consumption. The funds will pay for energy audits of two homes built before the new code was adopted and audits of two of the same model homes built under the more stringent code; and$5,000 for Habitat for Humanity of the Roaring Fork Valley for development of a store that sells used construction materials that were donated.The Environment Foundation has given $1.2 million to nearly 250 organizations since it was created. In addition to contributions from Skico employees, the foundation receives substantial financial support from the Aspen Community Foundation and the Aspen Skiing Co. Family Fund.
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State department of transportation crews are well on their way to clearing Highway 82 to Independence Pass, which should open on schedule May 27 at noon.