ACTION ALERT: Your Input About Drake Decommissioning Is Needed Now!

The Colorado Springs Utilities Council is this summer making critical decisions that will affect the future of our energy portfolio. Unfortunately, based on statements and actions by this Council in the recent past, the fear is that they will resort to the same dirty energy status-quo solutions that they find to be easiest and cheapest. However, we all know that continuing use of coal to generate electricity is NOT the cheapest when we factor in the serious health impacts and environmental damage that burning coal causes to the over 500,000 people in our community from the dangerous toxins that spew from the Martin Drake coal-fired power plant, and the amount of carbon pollution that enters the atmosphere causing global warming.

Your voice needs to be heard that dirty, polluting, and dangerous status-quo is no longer acceptable for our community – especially now that cleaner alternative energy solutions are cost-competitive with and even cheaper than coal. Proper planning will take advantage of the cost savings from solar and wind that have no ongoing fuel costs and almost no pollution to worry about.

What makes this issue even more critical is that the fire at the Martin Drake Coal Plant this past April made it all too clear that this old, polluting coal-powered industrial facility has no place in the middle of our community. The Fire Chief even said if it were not for the brave firefighters responsiveness, there could have been an explosion.

So please get involved in two ways to tell the Council – ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! It’s time to retire Drake and move onto cleaner, safer energy solutions for our community. Even the Drake study report published in December of 2013 that the Council commissioned at the cost of $500,000 stated that operating Drake for the longer term was not feasible, practical or viable. Why isn’t the Council listening to the public and the energy experts?

The Council has stated that public input will be considered in the upcoming decisions about Drake’s retirement, so here’s how you can make your voice heard:

  1. Go online to the Drake Task Force website, and submit a public comment. Be respectful but firm in making it very clear that operating this old, polluting and dangerous plant any longer in the middle of our community is not only bad for our residents, it hurts our community’s economic prospects in attracting new businesses and young professionals.  You can find talking points here.
  2. Attend the “The Future of Martin Drake Power Plant – Panel Discussion | June 19, 2014” and support Drake Decommissioning with your questions to the panel.  NOTE: registration is required.
  3. Plan 3 minutes of statement that you will say in front of the Council in a special session designated just for public comment. The meeting will be held on June 26th, from 6-8pm at the City Council Chambers at 107 N. Nevada Avenue.
  4. Attend either of the two upcoming Utilities Council meetings on either June 18th or July 16th, from 1-5pm and make a public comment. Details and agendas for these meetings can be found at this website:

Thank you for your participation at this very important time where the near and long term planning for Colorado Springs energy decisions are being made!


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