Creating tomorrow's energy landscape

Published: 9/20/2018  12:36 PM
​Yesterday we took a big step forward in demonstrating our commitment to renewable energy. Our Utilities Board approved the addition of 150 megawatts of new solar generation plus battery storage to our system by 2024. The project will bring our re ...

Baseball, Football and Fall Prep

Published: 9/11/2018  8:14 AM
September is likely my favorite month in Colorado.  In the daytime, it feels like we're getting a second chance at summer, yet, nighttime brings us cool, crisp air. Football season is underway and baseball gets exciting. Our tradition, with Broncos ...

Changing the current collaboratively

Published: 9/6/2018  12:18 PM
When I first traveled through this area in the 1980s I was amazed at its natural beauty. I fell in love with the region, though, in the late 1990s when we decided to call it our home. Like any true love, it gets better with time. Colorado Springs is ...

Labor Day Weekend Checklist: To-dos for fall energy savings

Published: 8/30/2018  1:18 PM
As you may know, Labor Day is a federal holiday to recognize contributions that workers make to our society. The last thing we want to do on your holiday is to add to your workload. But a little effort this weekend can pay off with energy savings al ...

Top three tips for late summer lawn care

Published: 8/27/2018  3:51 PM
With the start of school, football season and trips to the mountains to see the aspens change color, it can be easy to forget about your lawn. Nonetheless, late summer is an important time to fertilize and adjust your watering schedule. By providin ...

Analytics driving force behind enhanced fire hydrant tracking & maintenance

Published: 8/24/2018  8:56 AM
​When it comes to fire hydrants, the coverage area is extensive, the stakes are high and the margin for error is slim. There are approximately 18,000 hydrants under Colorado Springs Utilities’ purview and each are expected to work when needed. Howev ...

CEO finalists announced

Published: 8/23/2018  1:00 PM
​Today, the Colorado Springs Utilities Board of Directors announced the top three finalists for the position of Chief Executive Officer. Former CEO Jerry Forte retired on May 30, 2018, after 12.5 years with Springs Utilities. Nearly 130 candidates ...

Poles need love too

Published: 8/17/2018  3:00 PM
​Did you know that every year, Colorado Springs Utilities inspects and tests 4,000 electric wood poles? It takes about 8 to 12 weeks to complete the work. In fact, that’s only a fraction of the poles that serve up power to our community. There is a ...

Colorado Springs Utilities moves forward with model water-sharing agreement

Published: 8/17/2018  8:31 AM
​Over the past year, the Colorado Springs Utilities Water Resources team has been working behind the scenes on a history-shaping agreement within the Colorado water industry. Last month Springs Utilities and the Lower Arkansas Water Management Asso ...

So easy a rabbit can do it

Published: 8/10/2018  2:19 PM
811 Day is tomorrow, and that means we’ve been reminding our customers to contact 811 before they dig. A large percentage of our electric, natural gas, water and wastewater mains and service lines are underground and out of sight, and very dangerous ...

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Animals & Predictions   

  by  Natalie E.  on  2/5/2018

​If Friday had a theme, it’d be animals and predictions. Feb. 2 - that day when sleepy, morning eyes gaze upon Punxsutawney Phil for a weather forecast. He saw his shadow. Six more weeks of winter. I hope it’s true. Six weeks of winter and a wet spring for our beloved Pikes Peak.

Just hours after Phil’s prediction, Colorado Parks and Wildlife staff Changed the Current for a bundle of bears. They gave seven yearling bear cubs a second chance of life in the wild on Pikes Peak. The three sets of siblings were orphaned for various reasons and, after many months of preparation to set them free, they bedded down in two dens on our watersheds for (hopefully) a cold and snowy stay. We're thrilled to have them! Protecting the natural environment is important to us, as is collaborating with other agencies that help make Colorado Springs a great place to live.

sleeping bears

The crew cruched through a dry, brittle landscape, carrying bears to their hide-away. I'm told that at this time of the year the snow can be so deep you'd need snow shoes and sleds to transport the 120 lb. creatures.

Bringing bears to new home

I can't help but wonder if pulling a sled is easier than lugging the weight of sleeping bears. I don't wonder about another thing, though. That incredibly brittle ground. It's a natural tinderbox. I buy-in to the philosophy that fire can be healthy for a forest. My concern comes, though, when it threatens our community and our water.

Our fresh, first-source Rocky Mountain water is delicious. We'd have challenges, though, if the reservoirs on the Peak were clogged with silt and nasty black residue left from an unwanted fire.

The warm, dry winter gives us a crunchy landscape that serves as a harsh reminder of years past - like 2002, 2012 and 2013 when wildfire was a bit too close to home. I plead with you all, be cautious and careful outdoors. One mistake could start fire and threaten our community again.

Driving in a capable 4- wheel drive truck away from the bears' new home, pristine reservoirs were a sight for dry eyes. Coming off of several wet years, our community has about a three-year supply in storage.

Mason Reservoir on Pikes Peak

That brings me to my next plea. Water for your landscape is readily available now. We live in a semi-arid climate and it's an especially dry year. Take a bit of time - twice a month - to water your landscape on warm, winter days. It will pay off this spring and summer.

As a sign-off, I can't resist sharing a thought with you from our General Manager of Water System Operations. (He's the outdoorsy looking fella in the orange jacket helping to lug a bear up the hill.) He said, "This place (the watershed) is owned by the citizens of Colorado Springs. We must responsibily care for it for their benefit." That, folks, is another reason that I love working at Colorado Springs Utilities. It's an organization filled with real people that are serious about serving you with the finest utilities around and making this a great place to call home.

Here's hoping that Punxsutawney Phil was right. Bring on winter and a snowy spring for the Rockies.

1  Comment

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Great article Natalie! The water paradox of Colorado Springs. And why does Keith get to have all the fun?

Monday, February 12, 2018  8:24 AM  Rick Johnson