Business Monday briefs: Black Hills proposes RNG and carbon offset program; Aspen readies for STR, residential changes

Carbondale Business Confluence set Sept. 21

The Carbondale Chamber will hold the Carbondale Business Confluence, themed “Future Forecast,” on Sept. 21.

The event will take place at Third Street Center from 8-11 a.m. and will include breakfast provided by Bonfire Coffee. From 4-6 p.m. there will be an evening of networking, information, small bites and more.

The Future Forecast-themed conference will kick off with an update on the Carbondale Comprehensive Plan presented by Mayor Ben Bohmfalk and Town Manager Lauren Gister. Plan highlights will include:

— Downtown character focusing on zoning and land use, public art and spaces

— Opportunity area (formerly Downtown North) on land use and mixed-use development

— Climate action plan on water, natural resources and stewardship

— Aging in the community on housing for seniors and mobility for all ages

— Bicycle/pedestrian infrastructure and connectivity

— Residential character on housing, style and scale

There will also be information on a new vision for destination stewardship of Carbondale’s tourism, health care and wellness and education with a focus on upward mobility. Updates from Garfield County and the state of Colorado on rural impacts also will be given.

The cost is $40 (before Aug. 31) for Carbondale members and $50 for nonmembers. Cost covers the confluence, breakfast and evening networking.

For tickets, updated information and membership options, visit or call the Carbondale Chamber office at 970-963-1890.

Black Hills Energy proposes RNG and carbon offset program

Black Hills Energy last week announced plans to offer a voluntary renewable natural gas and carbon offset program for residential and small-business customers. The program, submitted to the Colorado Public Utilities Commission in a June 6 filing, would allow participants to offset 100% or more of the emissions associated with their own natural gas usage.

“We believe natural gas will continue to play a critical role in a clean energy future,” said Kellie Ashcraft, Black Hills Energy’s vice president of Colorado operations. “While thousands of customers and communities rely on natural gas each day for highly efficient home and space heating, water heating, and cooking, our customers are increasingly looking to us for sustainable and cost-effective options to help them reduce the carbon footprint associated with their natural gas usage.”

As proposed, participants in the voluntary program would be able to purchase fixed price “blocks” at $5 per block, representing a portion of their natural gas usage. One block would be the equivalent of 20.5 therms of natural gas, which amounts to approximately 25% of the average residential customer’s monthly usage. Based on customer preference, participants could purchase enough blocks to offset more than 100% of the emissions associated with their natural gas usage. The offset would be achieved through a combination of carbon offset credits and renewable natural gas attributes.

Pending Colorado PUC approval, the company plans to offer the voluntary renewable natural gas and carbon offset program to customers as a four-year pilot program starting in 2023 and running through 2026.

“By piloting this program, we will have a better opportunity to shape the program to meet the expectations of our customers,” continued Ashcraft. “We’ll take this time to study a variety of performance factors such as customer interest and enrollments, which in turn, have the potential to drive growth in the carbon offset market and in renewable natural gas development across the communities we serve.”

STRs, residential legislation on city’s plate

Aspen city staff will present a second reading to City Council of the draft ordinance language related to both short-term rental activity and residential building code amendments on June 28.

For more detailed information about the key policy areas, proposed code amendments, and information for how to listen or participate in the upcoming adoption hearings, visit the project pages on Aspen Community Voice.