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Foundation gives to green causes

Aspen Times Staff

The Aspen Skiing Co.’s Environment Foundation announced yesterday that it donated $58,550 to eight “green” causes or organizations in its latest grant cycle.The Environment Foundation is operated and partially funded by Skico employees. It has donated $676,000 to environmental causes since it was created in 1997.In the latest round of grants:• Red Hill Council received $6,550 for continued trail development, revegetation and erosion control work on Red Hill outside Carbondale.• The Trust for Public Land received $10,000 to protect the High Elk Corridor from development. The High Elk Corridor is the stretch of land between Aspen and Crested Butte over West Maroon Pass. Numerous developable inholdings threaten the pristine nature of the corridor.• The Community Office for Resource Efficiency received $7,000 for a regional conference on climate change and its impacts on the ski industry.• New Century Transportation Foundation received $10,000 to promote transit-oriented design in the Roaring Fork Valley. The foundation works to centralize new development around mass-transit centers, reducing sprawl and increasing convenience.• Yampa High School in Glenwood Springs and Colorado Rocky Mountain School received $3,500 each for student biodiesel programs. At CRMS, students will make biodiesel onsite out of waste kitchen grease, then use it to run school buses. Yampa will initiate a project to eventually run its school bus on Blue Sun biodiesel, involving students in the whole process, from a feasibility study to implementation, and integrating the program into the school curriculum. • Aspen Center for Environmental Studies’ Rock Bottom Ranch in Basalt received $8,000 to build an educational boardwalk trail across the property and for operating support. Rock Bottom Ranch is a major conservation easement that serves as the ACES of the midvalley.• The Science Outreach Center received $4,000 for its JASON: Kids Teaching Kids science program. Science and environmental education is crucial for developing future environmental professionals.• Wilderness Workshop received $6,000 for its continued work in public land advocacy and preservation.The foundation will also help the Roaring Fork Transit Agency transition to clean, renewable biodiesel in all its buses, a project started a year ago.