Event in Steamboat to focus on oil’s aftermath | SteamboatToday.com

Event in Steamboat to focus on oil’s aftermath

Transition effort comes to Steamboat with Thursday event

If you go

What: “In Transition 1.0” film and Q-and-A with Michael Brownlee, co-founder of Transition Colorado

When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday

Where: Bud Werner Memorial Library, Library Hall

Cost: Free

Contact: Call 970-879-0240 or visit the library’s events website for more information.

Online

Can’t make it Thursday? Watch the 50-minute “In Transition 1.0” here

Learn more about transition efforts across the globe here and here

If you go

What: "In Transition 1.0" film and Q-and-A with Michael Brownlee, co-founder of Transition Colorado

When: 6:30 p.m. Thursday

Where: Bud Werner Memorial Library, Library Hall

Cost: Free

Contact: Call 970-879-0240 or visit the library’s events website for more information.

— A growing movement to coordinate sustainability and conservation efforts in anticipation of oil's decline — a debatable topic itself — comes to Steamboat Springs this week.

Michael Brownlee, co-founder of Transition Colorado, hosts a screening of "In Transition 1.0" at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Bud Werner Memorial Library. In addition to the 50-minute film, the free event includes a discussion about growing "transition" efforts, which coordinate groups and individuals to increase a community's self-sufficiency in areas including transportation, food production and more, with the goal of drastically reducing carbon dioxide emissions and dependence on fossil fuels.

Andrea Kennedy, a board member for the Yampa Valley Sustainability Council, noted that many Routt County residents already are involved in numerous efforts on those lines. Community gardens, carpool groups, green building programs and healthy lifestyles, for example, are abundant in the region.

"This is kind of perfect timing," Kennedy said about Thursday's event. "I really do feel like Steamboat's already on the right path."

According to the Transition Network, based in Totnes, England, its efforts began in 2005 and have spread to communities across the globe, often in rural, geographically isolated areas.

Routt County Commissioner Diane Mitsch Bush noted Sunday that the Sustainability Council is doing a very admirable job of promoting local awareness of environmental conservation issues.

"I think that coordinating and networking and education are major functions of the Yampa Valley Sustainability Council," Mitsch Bush said.

Kennedy said the transition efforts of Brownlee and others provide guidance for how to further coordinate sustainability efforts and share new ideas.

"It gives kind of a roadmap, so you can kind of plug yourself in," she said. "How are we going to support ourselves when peak oil really diminishes in the next 50 years?"

The concept of peak oil, meaning when global oil production reaches its maximum point and then declines, has been debated for decades. Viewpoints and theories range from an imminent decline to a plentiful, long-term supply of hydrocarbon fuels.

Transition Network literature cites other global conditions, such as climate change and economic instability, as additional reasons for its efforts to increase communities' environmental sustainability.

Mitsch Bush said a conservation ethic is valuable regardless of the reasons.

"I think energy efficiency and conservation are actually great energy sources," Mitsch Bush said. "There are so many relatively easy ways that we all, as individuals and organizations, can save energy. … I think it's always good to get fresh ideas."

— To reach Mike Lawrence, call 871-4233 or e-mail mlawrence@steamboatpilot.com