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Tips for Colorado Companies to Reduce Air Pollution Post-COVID


Wednesday, July 21, 2021   

DENVER -- As offices and businesses begin to open their doors after COVID-19 shutdowns, a new guidebook offers ways for CEOs and other commuters to lower their carbon footprints.

Transportation recently eclipsed power generation as the single largest contributor of greenhouse-gas pollution in Colorado.

Carlos Fernandez, state director for The Nature Conservancy in Colorado, said as companies consider making telework permanent and other policy changes, the guide provides detailed best practices for reducing the number of cars on the road.

"This handbook will provide a wide range of transportation options on how to be really thoughtful about establishing the 'new normal,'" Fernandez explained.

For work that can't be done from home, the handbook addresses practical challenges for incorporating public transportation, bicycles, electric vehicles and carpooling into organizational culture. Companies can offer workers free or discounted public transportation passes, and monthly cash payments if they opt out of a parking permit. Firms also can help bridge critical last-mile gaps by shuttling workers to and from transit stops in a company van.

Reducing climate pollution from the transportation sector is widely seen as essential to meeting goals set at the Paris climate accord, and scientists warn that less than a decade remains to avoid the worst impacts of climate change.

Fernandez agreed major structural changes will be needed to meet climate deadlines, but he noted the guide offers ways for individuals and businesses to make significant contributions.

"A lot of that can be done through legislation, but what are the best practices?" Fernandez asked. "I would tell you Driving Change is one of those examples that actually each of us individually can contribute."

The guidebook, "Driving Change, The Colorado Employer's Guide to Green Mobility," is the first of a series aiming to address greenhouse-gas emissions in various sectors. It was produced by The Nature Conservancy in Colorado in partnership with the Colorado Forum.

Disclosure: The Nature Conservancy in Colorado contributes to our fund for reporting on Climate Change/Air Quality, Energy Policy, Environment, and Water. If you would like to help support news in the public interest, click here.

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