August 11, 2021


Micah Parkin,, 504-258-1247


In Response to IPCC Report, Climate Activists Call for Complete Phase Out of Fossil Fuels in Colorado

Following the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s newest report on climate change, local nonprofit calls on Governor Polis to take immediate action

BOULDER, CO – On Monday, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) released its sixth scientific assessment on the climate crisis. The results were stark, with scientific models predicting rapidly rising temperatures and worsening natural disasters if greenhouse gas emissions continue to increase. The call from the IPCC is clear, the world must cut fossil fuels and rapidly reduce emissions now. The report specifically calls for “strong, rapid and sustained reductions” in methane emissions, which have risen sharply in recent years, caused by fracking and shale oil and gas development, poorly managed conventional gas and oil drilling, and meat production. Last year, methane emissions increased by a record amount, according to the UN environment program.

In response to the report, local environmental nonprofit 350 Colorado is calling on Governor Jared Polis to completely phase out fossil fuel extraction and production in Colorado by 2030. Currently, Colorado is the sixth-largest producer of fracked shale oil. The Governor’s Energy Office’s Greenhouse Gas Roadmap plans to increase fracked oil production by 86% in the next decade, rather than rapidly decreasing fossil fuel production as the world’s scientists are calling for.

“Colorado cannot claim to be doing its part to address the climate crisis and continue to allow fracking companies to extract and produce ever more oil and gas, which is polluting our air and overheating our climate,” said Micah Parkin, Executive Director of 350 Colorado. “Governor Polis needs to respond with the bold leadership that voters expected of him and that scientists are calling for by implementing a rapid, just transition off fossil fuels, beginning with a managed decline of shale oil and gas production in Colorado.”

The IPCC’s sixth assessment found that with the current policies in place, the world is on track for a 3-degree Celsius temperature rise. More than double the 1.5-degree threshold that the IPCC warned would result in catastrophic impacts across the world. In May, the International Energy Agency (IEA) also released a landmark report that called for a rapid reduction in fossil fuel production, stating “there is no need for investment in new fossil fuel supply in our net-zero pathway.”

Colorado is already experiencing the impacts of the climate crisis. This weekend, the Denver-Metro area was rated as #1 in the world for worst air quality as wildfire smoke from the west blanketed the state combining with record-high ozone levels. Flooding and mudslides across Colorado have devastated areas impacted by wildfires, cutting off key transportation systems and taking multiple lives.

“I’m a mother of a child with pollution-induced asthma, who was displaced by Hurricane Katrina and then moved to Colorado only to be put on evacuation notice again for the FourMile Canyon Fire” said Parkin. “It’s time for leaders like Gov. Polis to take a strong stand, listen to the scientists, and do our part to protect our children and future generations from the worst by orchestrating a managed phase-out of fossil fuel production by the end of this decade and a rapid, just transition to a renewable energy future.”