WCC of Mesa County (formerly the Concerned Citizens Alliance) is WCC's local community group in Mesa County.

Green Schools

On April 12, 2007, teachers representing Mesa County District 51 schools unanimously endorsed a plan to urge the Board of Education to look at High Performance Green Buildings (HPGB) when they build new schools. The next step is for the resolution to be presented to the Board of Education.

With plans to build five to six new schools in the coming decade, now is the time to begin designing and implementing High Performance Green Building (HPGB) standards for Mesa County schools. With the right mix of upfront design work and the political will from the Board of Education, we can ensure that we build high performing and efficient schools.

Our members have partnered with community members to begin the process of incorporating HPGB standards that will save taxpayers money, improve students test scores and keep money where it should be - in the classroom.

  • Student test scores in green schools are 20% higher and sick days and instances of asthma are 38.5% lower.
  • Schools in the United Sates spend $6 billion on energy. That's more than they spend on computers and books combined.
  • Energy spending is only second to salary expenses.
  • HPGBs on average save $100,000 per year—enough to hire two new teachers, buy 500 new computers, or purchase 5000 textbooks.
  • LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental design) certified schools use 30-50% less energy than conventional schools
  • LEED certified school use 30% less water and have higher teacher retention

"Teachers endorse green schools" Grand Junction Free Press, 4/18/07

Watershed Protection

In response to the leasing of oil & gas mineral rights within the municipal watershed in February 2006, WCC of Mesa County members turned in 4,150 petition signatures to Grand Junction City Hall in order to establish a watershed protection ordinance. Rather than place the measure on the November ballot, the Grand Junction City Council voted unanimously to adopt the ordinance on September 6 at a public hearing.

The wording in the ordinance attaches additional protective requirements to activities within the Grand Junction watershed that are considered "high risk", including oil & gas drilling, timber sales and feed lot operations. The measure also requires that drilling companies post bonds that would cover 100% of potential damages as estimated by the city manager.

Also in response to the BLM's leasing of oil & gas mineral rights, the Town of Palisade is currently engaged in developing a Community Development Plan to protect its watershed.

Background Information

  • Originally named the Concerned Citizens Resource Association, the group formed in 1988 in response to a proposed hazardous waste incinerator proposed near the Colorado/Utah border. In coalition with groups in Utah, WCC of Mesa County successfully blocked the proposal.
  • Since then, WCC of Mesa County members have been a watchdog of bothe the Hanson Incinerator in Grand Junction and the Fruita Refinery, both of which were spewing toxins into local neighborhoods. In 1996, WCC of Mesa County stopped Conoco from building massive fuel storage tanks in downtown Grand Junction.
  • In more recent campaigns, WCC of Mesa County members not only have been working to improve Mesa County's Land Development Code, but also spearheaded WCC's efforts on a statewide growth initiative in 2000.

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Other Resources

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To get involved with WCC of Mesa County, contact Andy Whipple at (970) 256-7650 or (970) 250-8332.

Western Colorado Congress is an alliance for community action empowering people
to protect and enhance their quality of life in western Colorado.

PO Box 1931, Grand Junction, CO 81502; phone (970) 256-7650; fax (970) 245-0686