ENERGY EXPERTS SAY USE OF COAL IS ON THE RISE WORLD-WIDE
Earlier this month, the International Energy Agency (IEA) released its Coal Market report for the period 2012 -2017. The analysis documents coal as a major global energy resource whose utilization has been on a dramatic upswing for the last several decades and particularly in the past few years. In 2010, for example, the world used 7.08 billion metric tons of coal. By 2011, we utilized 7.384 billion metric tons — a 4.3% increase in just one year. The IEA says these substantial increases in coal consumption will not only continue but will expand significantly over the next several years. Coal consumption has increased in the European Union and Eurasia. The United States obtains 44% of its electricity from coal. South Africa is bringing millions out of poverty with a coal-based economy. And, perhaps most importantly, dynamic nations in Asia are utilizing coal to both support economic growth and improve the environment. These nations are building advanced coal power plants to ensure affordable and reliable electricity for decades. The IEA says by 2015, 50% of the world’s most efficient coal power plants will be in China or India.
JACOBSON RESIGNS AS CRAIG DAILY PRESS EDITOR
Bryce Jacobson, editor of the Craig Daily Press, has stepped down to take a job in Greeley. Jacobson posted on his Facebook page yesterday that he would be taking a job as the Director of Advertising at the Greeley Tribune. Jacobson says he will be in charge of the entire advertising department, and will be moving back to the area where he grew up. He says while he’s excited about the future, he’s sorry it means leaving Craig. Jacobson’s last day with the Craig Daily Press will be February 6th. He starts with the Greeley Tribune February 11th.
CRAIG POLICE WARN OF COUNTERFEIT $10 BILLS
The Craig Police Department is warning businesses and individuals of an influx of counterfeit $10 bills circulating in the area. According to police, the bills are computer copies of actual currency, and some store employees may not take the time to check them. The department says the actual feel of the paper will be different, they’re slightly smaller than real bills, and the color and pictures on the bills are dull and slightly blurry. They also remind people that real $10 bills have the water mark on the right side of the bill, there is a security thread running from top to bottom on a real bill that can’t be duplicated with a copier, and actual bills have a number “10” on the lower right corner that changes color at different angles. Police are warning business owners to take the time to examine the bills they get, to avoid being a victim. If you do receive what you think is a fake bill, call local law enforcement.
BLM TO BURN SLASH PILES STARTING MONDAY
Smoke could be visible south of Rangely starting Monday, as fire managers from the Northwest Colorado Fire Management Unit plan to burn about 180 piles of pinyon/juniper slash accumulated during a thinning project. Firefighters will be burning the piles on BLM land 18 miles south of Rangely, next to Rio Blanco County Road 23. The project was designed to reduce wildfire risk near oil and gas facilities to improve firefighter and public safety. The piles should take two to three days to burn and will only be ignited if weather conditions allow.
PARKS AND WILDLIFE CAN’T TRACK FELONS WHO APPLY FOR HUNTING LICENSES
Colorado Parks and Wildlife officials say they’re having a tough time enforcing laws that bar felons from hunting in the state. Under state law, nothing in the law prevents a felon from obtaining a Colorado hunting license and no criminal background check is required. It’s illegal for felons to possess the firearms or archery weapons needed to bring down an animal, but plenty of felons are doing it. Officials say more than 300,000 hunting licenses are issued for big game in Colorado every year and the state cannot trace the number going to felons.
DEMOCRATS FACE CONSTITUTION ISSUES OVER CIVIL UNIONS
Colorado Democrats will move civil unions for gay couples closer to a reality in the coming weeks, but there’s a bigger battle looming over marriage for same-sex couples. Senate Democrats are poised to give initial approval to a civil unions bill today. The measure will likely clear both chambers quickly and be signed by the governor. Democrats are guarded about the possibility of marriage for gay couples because the state constitution bans it. Opponents of civil unions like Focus on the Family’s CitizenLink say they worry gay marriage is the ultimate goal. The U.S. Supreme Court will hear arguments in March on California’s constitutional ban on gay marriage. Democratic Senator Pat Steadman, the civil unions sponsor, says Colorado’s constitutional amendment “will not stand the test of time.”
STATE TO ABANDON EMERGENCY EXCEPTION RULE
The Colorado Supreme Court is doing away with an emergency exception for people involved in accidents because it could mislead jurors. In a ruling handed down yesterday, the court ordered a new trial for a man who sued after he was hit by a car that skidded across an icy patch in the road near Telluride in 2004. The jury ruled in favor of Michael Johnson, who skidded into a car driven by Richard Bedor. Bedor was injured and filed a negligence lawsuit. The Supreme Court says jurors may have been confused after they were told a person confronted by a sudden emergency cannot be expected to respond normally. The high court abolished the doctrine entirely, saying the potential to mislead a jury outweighs the benefits.
COURT RULES AGAINST GESSLER IN MAIL BALLOT ISSUE
A Colorado district court judge has blocked Secretary of State Scott Gessler’s rules on mail ballots. The judge in Denver ruled Monday that state law allows county clerks the authority to send ballots to inactive voters in mail-in-only elections. Under the previous rules, county clerks were required to mail a series of notifications to inactive voters, who had to change their status in order to receive a mail ballot. Gessler sued Denver County Clerk and Recorder Debra Johnson in 2011 for sending mail ballots to people who had not voted in previous elections. Gessler has been seeking a compromise that would allow voters to receive election-related notices by email and by mail.
In high school sports:
The Soroco girls host Hayden at 5.
Meeker heads to the Grand Valley Duals.