Why methane is a big deal

Since we were founded, Colorado Moms Know Best has advocated for reductions in methane pollution. For us, the reasons for doing so are clear every time we look at our kids: it all comes back to their health. Methane pollution from oil and gas operations contains chemicals that lower our air quality, exacerbating asthma and contributing to other respiratory problems – particularly in children.

Did you know that one in ten children suffer from asthma in Colorado?

Fortunately, the Obama Administration developed the Methane and Waste Prevention Rule, helping to protect the air that our children breathe. These safeguards were inspired by Colorado’s own methane protections put in place by the Colorado Air Quality Control Commission (if you have been with us since the beginning, then you may remember that organizing around those safeguards was our first public foray into fighting for clean air).

After following Colorado’s lead, the safeguards were developed at the national level over five years and were shaped by the more than 300,000 comments that the government received during that process. The safeguards protect public health and ensure that valuable energy and taxpayer dollars are not simply burned away into the sky. Seems like common sense, right?

Unfortunately, a couple of weeks ago, the House of Representatives passed a little-used Congressional Review Act (CRA) resolution to repeal these methane safeguards. Even more concerning is that by using a CRA resolution, any future administration will be prevented from ever enacting a rule that is substantially similar.

We cannot let that happen. We must stand up for our children.

To protect our Colorado outdoor opportunities and way of life, we need the U.S. Senate to stand up for our children’s health and stop the CRA resolution. I sent a letter to our U.S. Senators Cory Gardner and Michael Bennet asking them to vote no. But, I need your voice too. Please pledge to call our Senators today and ask them to protect your kids!


Call Colorado’s Senators at the numbers here and ask them to stand up for Colorado — protect the health of our children, in addition to avoiding waste of energy and taxpayer dollars, ask them to vote no on the BLM CRA and further, to take a leadership role on this issue.  Let them know that Colorado parents are counting on them to do the right thing for the health of their children and to ensure that we have the cleanest air in the country.

As we have seen with other issues and votes already — every single call will make a difference!

If you need help knowing what to say, below is a sample call script for this issue:

Hi Senator, my name is [first & last name] & I live in [zip code]. I’m calling to ask you to VOTE NO on a CRA for the Bureau of Land Management’s Methane and Waste Prevention Rule. Colorado has led the way on this issue and its Senators need to continue the momentum. The rule requires the capture of methane rather than releasing it into the atmosphere. Our natural resources belong to the American people; we cannot let D.C. and congress shortchange taxpayers, damage public health including that of our children, and compromise our national security by passing a CRA resolution blocking these recent BLM reforms.

Call their DC offices or the office nearest you:

Senator Cory Gardner’s offices:

  • Colorado Springs (719) 632-6706
  • Denver (303) 391-5777
  • Durango (970) 415-7416
  • Fort Collins (970) 484-3502
  • Grand Junction (970) 245-9553
  • Greeley (970) 352-5546
  • Pueblo (719) 543-1324
  • Yuma (970) 848-3095

Senator Michael Bennet offices:

  • Alamosa 719-587-0096
  • Colorado Springs 719-328-1100
  • Denver 303-455-7600
  • Durango 970-259-1710
  • Fort Collins 970-224-2200
  • Grand Junction 970-241-6631
  • Pueblo 719-542-7550

A Back to School Reminder: Turn Off Those Engines When Picking Up Kids

School has started!  Kids are getting to know new teachers and classmates, and parents are wondering what to do with all their extra time (just kidding about that last part).  For some kids and their parents, they may be getting to know a new school or it may be a return to see familiar faces you’ve missed seeing over the summer.  Whatever the case it offers an opportunity for us all to check on our daily routine and how it impacts the air our kids breathe.


Some families are lucky enough to be able to walk or bike to school, which helps keep our air cleaner.  Others have to drive – but did you know that idling just one car for five minutes per day outside your child’s school can emit as many as 25 pounds of harmful air pollutants and 260 pounds of carbon dioxide a year?  Throughout the Denver Metro area, idling is responsible for an estimated 40,000 tons of harmful air pollution a year and 400,000 tons of CO2 emissions.  This results in over 40 million gallons of fuel wasted while idling, costing area residences and businesses over $100 million dollars a year.

That’s why the Clean Air at Schools: Engines Off! (CASEO) program is so important!  CASEO aims to reduce air pollution at schools in Colorado by working with parents and school administrators to reduce idling vehicles in pick up areas outside schools.  Parents and buses are most commonly idling right next to the playground where children are playing – and of course running around breathing in pollutants.  CASEO provides great information, signs to post in pick up areas to raise awareness and even works with school districts to upgrade and retrofit their diesel school buses.

If you drive your kids to school,  the easiest way to make a difference is to turn your engine off while you wait.  In fact, it’s recommended to turn off your engine anytime your car will be stopped for 30 seconds or more.  For an even bigger impact you can work with your school to take additional steps school-wide.  Check out their website for more info. and tools to help.

Help make a difference for all our kids – learn more about CASEO today!

What’s the big deal about the Regional Haze Rule?

Hello! As the new Head Mom for Colorado Moms Know Best, I’m so excited to combine my passion for ensuring my daughter’s bright future with my desire to protect our healthy environment and clean air so she can run, jump and play outside. We’ll have lots of upcoming events where we can network, have some fun and make a difference together – starting less than week from today.

On June 1st – just in time for the National Park Service’s 100 year anniversary – join moms like you to make our voices heard on strengthening the Regional Haze Rule.

Believe it or not, loopholes in the rule lead to harmful air pollution in Rocky Mountain National Park and other parks that rivals the poor air quality in major cities like L.A. and Denver. Thankfully, the Obama Administration has proposed changes that will restore natural air quality to national parks and wilderness areas. 

If you’re like me and are taking your kids to visit a national park this summer, I know you’ll want to know that your family is breathing clean, healthy air.  

But the Regional Haze Rule changes are not a slam dunk: the EPA needs to hear from the public – concerned parents like us – before deciding whether to finalize them.

Join me to speak out in support of these rules on June 1st starting at 9 a.m. at the EPA regional office at 1595 Wynkoop Street in Denver.  

Please help us clean up the pollution in our parks. For more information, check out the National Parks Conservation Association’s website then email me at comomsknowbest@gmail.com to let me know if you can join me at the hearing.

Hope to see you there!

Keep It Up, Moms!

Emma PinterAs a mother, I’ve started to think about summer – signing up for camp, organizing play dates with neighbor children and planning our first backpacking trip. One thing I know for sure: We need clean air to enjoy Colorado this year and for generations to come.

I recently found this photo from my 1st CMKB event a few years back – it’s a reminder of how honored I have felt to spend the past year working and talking with moms across this state about clean air policy, the future of our state and our families. When asked what CMKB is about I quickly replied, “clean air and healthy kids!”

Over the past year, we have attended hearings at the EPA and several at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. We have celebrated at Rocky Mountain. National Park and protested with Santa and his reindeer in front of Attorney General Cynthia Coffman’s office. We have appeared on television, radio, in newspapers and online. Moms will go wherever there is a need.

My time as Head Mom is coming to a close, but we are pleased to welcome new Head Mom, Jen Clanahan. While the attacks on clean energy and clean air are sure to continue, Jen is committed to organize us all to protect our Colorado. In the years to come I hope to see all of you out in our parks and the Capitol steps, as we continue this fight for our health, our Colorado and our children.

Standing up for clean air should be obvious

I am really thankful to live in Colorado, where I can hike, bike and ski in the great outdoors with my children. That’s one of the reasons I completely agree with Gov. Hickenlooper who said earlier this week: “Clean Air and protecting public health should be everyone’s top priority.”

The Clean Power Plan will reduce air pollution from outdated power plants. The facts are clear – the plan will make kids and grandparents healthier. So I am upset that Attorney General Coffman has joined the lawsuit challenging the Clean Power Plan, the single most important thing we can do to clean up the air our children and elders breathe.

The Colorado way is to collaborate to find solutions to the challenges our state faces. For years we have developed bipartisan clean air policies, garnering input from businesses, industry, government and the public. We can find our own way of implementing the Clean Power Plan that will preserve our clean air and way of life that is important to attracting new businesses and workers to Colorado, as well as grow our state’s clean tech economy.

Thanks Gov. Hickenlooper for defending the Clean Power Plan – it’s good for kids and for commerce, a win-win all around.

October Event: Halloween at Bluff Lake Nature Center!

Here at Colorado Moms Know Best we have a lot of opportunities to talk policy, but this fall we would like to invite you to come and talk with each other. Please join us, with your little one(s), at Bluff Lake Nature Center at Friday, 10/30, at 11:00 am – dressed in your scary finest!

On top of celebrating Halloween (only a frog’s breath away), we have been working with their Executive Director, Jeff Lamontagne, to  create an interactive and fun “Leave No Trace” program for children. Meanwhile, our Head Mom, Emma Pinter, will be there to update parents our current campaigns and more information on how to become an advocate for the health of Colorado’s children by promoting cleaner air. Afterward, there will be a nature walk for everyone to enjoy (and practice their trick or treating skills)!

We hope to see you there!

Emma Testifies for Clean Air

Recently I testified at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment public hearing on the Clean Power Plan to let them know Colorado moms care about clean air for our kids.

signIn 2013, 64% of the electricity generated in Colorado came from coal. All of us know Colorado can do better. Right now, we’re on track to meet over 85% of the Clean Power Plan’s emissions reductions due to programs already in place. That is a fantastic start – but it’s only the beginning.

The Clean Power Plan standards give Colorado flexibility in developing a plan that works for our own state’s families, economy, and unique Western way of life. That quality of life is exactly what I highlighted when I went to testify at the CPPHE hearing, and I shared letters from moms from all over Colorado about why we are passionate about clean power and the clean air that comes with it.

Our message is simple: clean Air means healthy kids. If we want to keep our families safe and healthy, then there’s no room for pollution in Colorado. Fortunately, thanks to our state’s past history of working together to tackle air quality issues, Colorado is well positioned to meet the Clean Power Plan’s carbon reduction goals. We can do this!

emmaathearingI grew up running in the woods near my house with my sister and other neighbor kids. That unfettered joy of running in wild spaces is why we love Colorado – it is the joy we want to pass on to our children. Clean air is the foundation of good health for our children and future generations after them.

The next public hearing is November 9, from 4:30-6 P.M at Fort Lewis College in Durango. We hope to see you there. If you can’t make it, we will continue to post information about future hearings on Facebook as we get information about them, so please check back often. I hope you will join us at least once over the next year – we need as many voices as we can to stand up for healthy kids. If you can’t feel free to email us here with your concerns about pollution in Colorado.

– Emma Pinter, Colorado Moms Know Best Head Mom

Pollution in our National Parks!

This July, the cousins came out for a visit. We were eager to share what makes Colorado special so, we packed a bag, packed the car, and headed for the mountains! 20150703_122348

It was a spectacular day. Our National Parks hold so much beauty and communicate in an instant our Colorado way of life – and, Rocky Mountain National Park never fails to deliver, including on that day.

That’s why I was shocked to read in the Denver Post a couple weeks ago that Rocky Mountain National Park’s “air exceeded the health standard three times in 2013.”

Because of that, Rangers have been working with local officials to lower levels. However, the problem persists across Colorado.

According to the Denver Post,20150703_150558 “air pollution in national parks, including four in Colorado, has reached unhealthy levels, obscuring the most stunning landscapes.” Sadly, those four parks are Colorado favorites: Rocky Mountain, Great Sand Dunes, Black Canyon of the Gunnison, and Mesa Verde.

I want to continue to enjoy our natural landscapes, as well as show-off to out-of-state cousins.

If you care about clean air, please join me in a letter writing campaign! If you are interested in writing a letter to your local paper, please email us at CMKB!


Emma Pinter,
Head Mom

A reason to celebrate!

Moms have a reason to celebrate today – the EPA released Clean Power Plan rules that will improve the health of our kids!

We all expect that the air we breathe is safe. But right now, power plants dump carbon and other pollution into the air that causes childhood asthma and other respiratory illnesses. No one wants that.

As a mom I am willing to fight all day long for my kids to play in the great outdoors, just like I did growing up. So I couldn’t be more excited that the EPA is standing with parents to create a Clean Power Plan that will offer credits and other incentives to shift to renewable energy.

Climate change and a lack of clean air are hurting our children and their future. As Dr. Ivor Douglas from Denver Health said, “Compared with my patients today, a girl born in 2015 will have a three-fold higher chance of extreme heat exposure and critical illness than her parents.”

We have a moral obligation to continue making Colorado a cleaner and healthier state to raise our families. Today is a great day for families who want their kids to run and play outdoors without risking their health. Thanks, Clean Power Plan!

Spread the word about the good news by sharing this photo on Facebook or Twitter — we need to show Colorado that moms support clean air for our kids!

– Emma


PS: Don’t forget to check out our press release below too:

Moms Applaud Clean Power Plan Rules to Clean Up Air Kids Breathe
Optimistic about the positive health benefits for kids and families

DENVER – Parents active with Colorado Moms Know Best are celebrating the Environmental Protection Agency’s release of Clean Power Plan rules today. The rules are expected to lead to a 35% decrease in carbon emissions in Colorado by 2030, which will improve air quality and kids’ health.

“Moms believe we have a moral obligation to protect children’s health and future, ensuring they have clean air is one of the very basics,” said Emma Pinter, “head mom” with Colorado Moms Know Best. “Cleaning up air pollution from power plants will decrease illnesses like childhood asthma that not only slow our kids down but also cost us billions of dollars each year.”

Air pollution is a major contributor to childhood asthma, a serious illness that accounts for more hospitalizations than any other chronic illness. One out of 10 Colorado kids have asthma, more than 135,000 kids across the state, and over 40% of those reported missing at least one day of school last year due to the condition.

“Colorado is in great shape to meet the standards since we’re already on track to reduce carbon pollution by 75% with policies already in place,” said Dana Gutwein. “I’m so proud to be a Coloradan, knowing we will be committed to putting the rules into motion because we value clean air, healthy kids and our outdoor lifestyle.”

Colorado has been a leader in renewable energy. In 2004, Coloradans passed the first state ballot initiative to establish a renewable energy standards; 29 states and the District of Columbia have since adopted similar standards. In the years since, Colorado has added tens of thousands of clean tech jobs with an average salary of $78,000, according to the Metro Denver Chamber of Commerce’s 2014 Energy Cluster report.   

Colorado Moms Know Best helped influence Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission to adopt stricter air quality standards for oil and gas operations in the state of Colorado – and has been engaged in a campaign to promote the EPA’s Clean Air Power Plant rules.


Mercury Rising

Did you know that fishing sites across Colorado are under “unsafe mercury levels” warnings according to the Colorado Department of Public Health? Ugh, and just in time for my town’s annual 4th of July children’s fishing derby! I grew up fishing with my parents and have passed this fun tradition on to our kids. I’m shocked that I have to worry about exposing my kids to such harmful pollution in our air and waterways.

CMKBkidgraphicThis week the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to make it harder for the EPA to limit Mercury emissions. We know that mercury can causes tremors, birth defects and other serious problems so I have only one conclusion: The justices who voted for this must not have any children or grandchildren!

Disagreeing with the decision, Justice Elena Kagan wrote that the EPA acted reasonably, and accused the court of micromanaging of the regulatory process. Those of us at Colorado Moms Know Best couldn’t agree more!

I’m fighting for my family to be able to fish and eat our fresh-caught meal without the fear of being poisoned. Who will stick with me and work clean air, clean water and the right to enjoy our great state for generations to come?

– Emma Pinter, Head Mom