Headlines – June 9, 2023 Kira Z
Boulder Officials Announce Causes Of Marshall Fire
Boulder County officials announced the results of the almost 17-month-long investigation into the cause behind the Marshall Fire.
The Boulder County Sheriff’s Department investigation has concluded that the devastating fire was not intentionally set, and the District Attorney says no criminal charges are pending.
Investigators determined the December 30th, 2021 wildfire had two ignition points that were fed by winds gusting up to 100 miles an hour. The two fires rapidly grew and combined into an inferno spanning more than six thousand acres in Boulder County.
Authorities said the fire first spread from a smoldering trash fire located at the 12 Tribes religious community. Residents there had been burning yard waste six days before the Marshall fire. Firefighters responded to a call about the yard waste burn on December 24th, but determined it was under control. Boulder County Sheriff Curtis Johnson says the fire was put out that evening, and its embers buried as directed.
The second blaze, which ignited around two thousand feet upwind from the first, started less than an hour later. Boulder County District Attorney Michael Dougherty said the fire likely started from a faulty Xcel Energy electricity line.
A spokeswoman for Xcel, however, told the Denver Post that its power lines had nothing to do with the Marshall fire, and that the Sheriff’s investigation was flawed.
Dougherty said that while the city is not filing criminal charges, findings may lead to civil suits from victims of the fire.
The Marshall fire claimed two lives, and destroyed more than a thousand homes and commercial buildings. It remains the most destructive wildfire in Colorado history.
Fracking Concerns Lead to Statewide Action
An anti-fracking group is trying to increase pressure on local and national lawmakers to phase out the controversial technique of extracting gas and oil from the ground.
The Safe and Healthy Colorado coalition and allies are calling for action from June 8th to 11th, as part of a nationwide effort to phase out fossil fuels.
The “Phase Out Fracking 2030” campaign is aimed at gradually eliminating new fracking permits in Colorado by 2030, which Kate Christianson of 350 Colorado says continue to be issued.
Fracking is the primary source of pollution contributing to the climate crisis and severe ozone air quality issues along the Front Range.
Mobile Homeowner Program Gets $28M In Funding
Colorado housing officials have earmarked over $28 million dollars towards a program that will help mobile home residents purchase the land their homes are on.
Governor Jared Polis said the program established a revolving loan and grant program to provide assistance and financing to mobile home owners seeking to organize and purchase their mobile home parks. According to the press release Thursday, nonprofits will manage the funding and provide technical and other support.
Boulder Takes First Step to Improve Safety on Baseline Road
The City of Boulder has initiated the first phase of the Baseline Road Transportation Safety Project, aimed at enhancing transportation safety for all travelers. This phase, anticipated to conclude by October 2023, focuses on Baseline Road from 28th Street to Foothills Parkway, involving repaving, restriping, and adding of bike lane buffers and crosswalks.
Phase 2 is scheduled for 2024, but is contingent on receiving federal grant funds. It will further improve the infrastructure. This project addresses the high crash rates for pedestrians and cyclists and aligns with the city’s Core Arterial Network initiative to establish a connected and protected transportation system.
Boulder Pride Festival
The City of Boulder is celebrating Pride Month with the annual Pride Festival in Boulder Central Park this Sunday, from 11:30 am to 5:00 PM. The event will include several activities and performances, as well as multiple food vendors.
Headlines – June 9, 2023 Kira Z