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CD17BDD13605023887258727005C9F51 Hearing Summary


Date Aug 4, 2021      
Location Old State Library

Presentation from Colorado Energy Office and Colorado Department of Transportation - Committee Discussion Only

10:51:43 AM  
Shoshana Lew, Executive
Director representing the Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT),
provided a PowerPoint presesentation (Attachment G) and an update about
Glenwood Canyon. Ms. Lew discussed that the threat to the canyon is ongoing
with three areas of concern: moving debris to determine what needs permanent
repairs; dealing with unstable boulders; and safe passage for CDOT employees
and contractors working on the road.  Areas outside of the canyon
experienced the greatest damage, including the Shoshone Power Plant.  The
structure is secure, but CDOT continues to monitor the area.  CDOT
is working when the weather is safe, however the monsoon weather pattern
is a problem.  There may be additional water damage, but CDOT does
not believe there is structural damage.  

10:55:20 AM  
Damage occurred to
the upper decks of the highway and the lower deck was fully submerged.
 The flow of the river channel is affected.  CDOT and the Department
of Public Safety (DPS) are partnering to take care of emergency operations
and monitor safety.  DPS is helping with traffic and CDOT is working
within communities and with peer agencies and the federal government.  The
governor's declaration under the Stafford Act will bring in resources.
 US50 is open until the situation is stabilized.  This is a long
term effort.
10:58:02 AM  
Developments over
the last 48 hours include work with the Federal Highway Administration
(FHWA) to provide emergency program funds, separate from the emergency
declaration.  Steve Harrelson, Chief Engineer for CDOT, provided information
about the damage.   Stanchions on the upper deck that hold the concrete
need to be repaired with new concrete and rebar near Blue Gulch.  Debris
needs to be removed.  The lower deck contains mud and water has undercut
the retaining wall, possibly damaging it.

11:01:33 AM  
The debris flow the
first few weeks was like oatmeal and difficult to clean and is now up to
15 feet deep.  Now rocks the size of cars, trash cans, and bowling
balls are in the debris, perhaps making it less likely to move.  Storms
have resulted in two to four inches of rain.  Crews are constantly
clearing debris that forces the river from side to side.  There is
damage from Dotsero to Rifle, with severe damage at Hanging Lakes.  Access
to the Shoshone Intake Dam is obliterated.  Power is out at Shoshone,
including no power for the dam gates.

11:07:54 AM  
There was a discussion
about the timeframe for opening the road.  The plan is to have one
lane in each direction open next week, one on the top deck and one on the
bottom deck.  CDOT will get more help this week from contractors with
dump trucks and front end loaders, although they are affected by the trucking
shortage, too.  The plan is to have the highway completely open before
the onset of winter and the ski season.
11:16:07 AM  
There was a discussion
about supporting communities, with regards to traffic loads.  CDOT
removed impediments to alternate routes, US 50 and a smaller project on
US 285.  State Patrol is providing enforcement, signage, flagging,
and temporary staff on Independence Pass.  Communities should communicate
successes and needs.  There is also a standing group, including counties,
to provide feedback on traffic and other issues.  Long term conversatons
are happening, too, with regards to response, recovery, and resiliency.
11:25:09 AM  
Discussion turned
to the effects of fire and materials for mitigating fire on forest health.
 Usually, materials and seed are applied after a fire, however run
off is increased.  There is a  soil layer that needs to be broken
up and does so over time.  The State Forest Service and Department
of Natural Resources are working with CDOT, too.  The berm at the
top of Hanging Lake was helpful in containing some of the debris.  

11:29:07 AM  
There was a discussion
about alternate routes and communication with local partners.  CDOT
may package projects together, so additional discussions may occur.

11:36:39 AM  
CDOT talked about
State Highway 14, including issues with culverts.  Mud did not damage
the highway.  The discussion included funding and response related
to the 2013/2014 floods.  CDOT acted quickly and the Federal Emergency
Management Agency (FEMA) and FHWA provided funds.  Immediate repairs
are being made in Glenwood Canyon and the federal government is  responding
to urgent needs.  The federal government involvement is embedded into
the daily urgent response team.
11:41:59 AM  
There may have been
problems with immediate repairs for past issues.  Both immediate and
past issues are currently being handled.

11:42:43 AM  
Director Will Toor,
representing the Colorado Energy Office (CEO), provided an update on transportation
emissions and greenhouse gas (GHG) emission  goals (Attachment H).
 Transportation is the largest source of GHG emissions in the state.
 Electric power generation, oil and gas, and buildings are also major
sources.  The GHG Roadmap was released last year and sets goals over
the next decade through 2030.   Low and zero emission vehicle rules
are already in place.  Fleet turnover will continue and investment
in light duty infrastructure and electrifiction.  Additional strategies
include focusing on GHG emission pollution standards for transportation
plans, incentivizing land use near jobs to reduce vehicle miles traveled,
developing a clean trucking strategy and vehicle standards post 2025, looking
at air quality standard for indirect sources of GHG, and expanding public
11:46:27 AM  
With the passage
of Senate Bill 21-260, $724 million will be invested in charging infrastructure.
 Three new enterprises will create charging infrastructure, provide
incentives to fleet electrification, and electrify public transit.  $1.2
billion will be invested over the next decade by government, private entities,
and public transit.  Senate Bill19-077 removed obstacles to transportation
electrification, requiring utilities to file transportation electrification
11:55:40 AM  
Mr. Toor indicated
that the federal government will create new light duty vehicle GHG emission
and Cafe standards.  California will also adopt clean air standards.
 States may choose to adopt the California standards or the federal
Clean Air Act standards.  Mr. Toor talked about zero emissions for
all new vehicles by 2035.  He touched on the clean trucking strategy
and reduction of emissions from medium and heavy duty trucks.  He
presented the following strategies for clean trucking: truck fleet turnover
must accelerate to incorporate clean technology and zero emissions; SmartWay;
advanced clean truck standards; support for the workforce; and a green
procurement policy.
12:01:34 PM  
Director Lew talked
about GHG emissions and the ongoing rulemaking involving the Transportation
Commission.  The rule will define the role of government in transportation
planning and provide more options to the public.  A draft rule will
be released on August13, 2021, followed by five public hearings.  A
policy paper describes the major issues: how pollution reduction is considered,
the magnitude of reductions, mitigation measures, and enforcement.  The
current transportation plan will most likely be changed.

12:07:17 PM  
Ms. Lew discussed
the CDOT rule as a mechanism to reduce GHG in the transportation sector
through transportation planning organizations.    Metropolitation
Planning Organization funding will be linked to mitigating GHG.  Various
options will be available to assist local organizations in meeting emissions
goals and providing options for consumers.  The GHG Roadmap outlines
how emissions will be reduced.  

12:15:04 PM  
There was a discussion
about enforcement measures related to GHG emissions in recent legislation,
as well as emissions goals in other sectors and market transformation.
 The dicussion touched on transportation choices, including mode and
type of vehicle.  Ms. Lew indicated that multiple strategies, such
as regulatory standards for new vehicles and emissions, could be deployed
to realize goals.  Additional infrastructure funding from the federal
government will assist in making changes at the scale required.  

12:18:34 PM  
Ms. Lew talked about
the federal government's focus on large auto companies.  CDOT and
committee members discussed comprehensive planning for transportation at
overall GHG emissions caluclations.  Several levels of government
are working together to get a handle on the various pieces of the transportation
sector.  This is a new project for CDOT and the federal goverment
is looking at Colorado as an example to follow.
12:25:13 PM  
Fuel standards were
discussed, especially developments at the federal level, with a proposal
possible by the end of the year.  The payload of electric trucks was
a discussed, including goals surrounding fleet vehicles.  Perhaps
other government agencies, such as higher education and local schools should
be included in these goals.  Air quality issues surrounding diesel
school buses were discussed and a possible shift to electric school buses.
 There was a suggestion that the Transportation Legislation Review
Committee assist with electrification goals.  Mr. Toor shared that
Higher Education is involved in discussions with CEO on collaborations
for buildings and transportation. He suggested that  there may be
opportunities for TLRC to assist in endeavors.

12:34:13 PM  
There was a discussion
about generating electricity for vehicle charging and batteries for vehicles.
 Mr. Toor talked about the future of electric generation, including
electric resource plans adoptions by Colorado utility companies for an
80 percent reduction in pollution by 2030.  The goal is to replace
coal fired electric generation plants with wind and solar, and use gas
turbines for back up.  The gas turbines will not be used often, but
are essential to reliability.  Mr. Toor mentioned that the goal is
to have carbon free electric generatin after 2030, which will require technical
and business innovations.  


He talked about innovations, including improvements in long range battery
storage; technologies that form energies; and firm zero carbon generation,
such as modular nuclear, hydrogen, and using exess renewables energy to
hydrolize water to create green hydrogen for combustion turbines.  These
technoligies will provide both generation and storage.  Federal investment
is expected through the infrastructure package and budget reconciliation.
 Mr. Toor mentioned a partnership with Eight Rivers Capital and the
Southern Ute tribe to create a 320 megawatt Allen cycle gas plant with
carbon capture that may provide  zero carbon generation to feed into
utility plants.
12:42:29 PM  
Mr. Toor discussed
the load on the elctric grid for charging vehicles.  He referenced
two state studies which include light and heavy duty vehicles.  One
study will be available later this fall.  He indicated that generally
there is a net positive benefit to the grid, especially related to light
duty vehicles since charging will take place at night.  There is often
excess capacity at night for transmission and storage.  He mentioned
that fixed costs are spread over a larger number of killowatt hours which
should have downward pressure on rates.

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