ritter

The Mynabirds Announce Spring Tour, Album in Stores Now

With this week’s release of her debut album as The Mynabirds, Laura Burhenn has officially turned the page from her role as one half of Georgie James.  Following The Mynabirds’ acclaimed first single “Numbers Don’t Lie,” Laura is giving another taste of What We Lose In The Fire We Gain In The Flood (Saddle Creek) with the bouncy, kiss-off anthem “Let The Record Go.”  Download the track HERE and if you haven’t heard “Numbers” yet you can check it out HERE.  For the next week you can also stream the full album HERE on Saddle Creek’s website.  Catch Laura and her band live when they kick off their spring tour on April 30th, which includes dates opening for Josh Ritter.

What We Lose draws from the gospel, old soul, and rock n roll that Burhenn was raised on, and many of the lyrics are inspired by a Zen-like view of the themes of loss and recovery.  With a surprisingly husky voice, considering her small stature, Burhenn adorns her words with a rich and emotive tone.  In the studio, singer-songwriter/producer Richard Swift helped carry out Burhenn’s vision, resulting in an album packed with both subtle detail and immediate charm.

The album also includes some notable guest artists.  Tom Hnatow (These United States) played pedal steel, Nate Walcott (Bright Eyes) arranged the horns on the album and backing vocals were provided by Orenda Fink (Azure Ray) and engineer/producer AJ Mogis (Monsters of Folk, Cursive, Tilly and The Wall).

Listen to The Mynabirds' "Let the Record Go"

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The Mynabirds – Spring Tour 2010:

* = with Josh Ritter

4/30: Des Moines, IA, Vaudeville Mews

5/1: Omaha, NE, Slowdown

5/7: Minneapolis, MN, Cedar Cultural Center

6/1: Cleveland, OH, Beachland Tavern

6/2: Washington, DC, Black Cat

6/3: Brooklyn, NY, The Bell House

6/6: Chicago, IL, Do Division Festival

6/7: Chicago, IL, Empty Bottle

6/8: Iowa City, IA, The Mill

6/11: Birmingham, AL, WorkPlay Theatre *

6/12: Baton Rouge, LA, Manship Theatre *

6/14: Austin, TX, Antone's *

6/15: Dallas, TX, Granada *

GOV. RITTER HELPS BREAK GROUND ON 2 VESTAS PLANTS; 1,350 NEW JOBS

Gov. Bill Ritter today joined Vestas executives, the crown prince and princess of Denmark and local leaders at a ground-breaking ceremony for two Vestas manufacturing facilities here that will create 1,350 new jobs.

“Today marks the third straight day of new-job announcements this week, resulting in 1,650 new jobs for Colorado,” Gov. Ritter said. “Vestas was one of Colorado’s earliest visionaries and pioneers in our New Energy Economy. Thank you, Vestas, for helping to lead Colorado forward and for working with us to develop a sustainable energy future and a sustainable economic future.”

The Brighton factories will be part of the significant manufacturing and research base Vestas – the Denmark-based wind system manufacturer – is establishing in the United States. One of the Brighton plants will produce giant wind blades and the other will make nacelle assemblies.

Vestas is spending about $290 million to build the two facilities, which will produce 1,800 blades and 1,400 nacelles a year. Brighton also will be home to a technology and production engineering office as well as a division of the Vestas Business Academy for employee training and development.

Vestas currently operates a wind blade manufacturing plant in Windsor and is building the world’s largest wind tower manufacturing facility in Pueblo. When all four plants are fully operational by the end of 2010, they will employ nearly 2,500 Coloradans.

Other job announcements Gov. Ritter took part in this week:

·         Monday: The Water Company of Pueblo, a high-tech water-purification company, announced it is moving into a bigger facility and adding more than 100 jobs.

·         Tuesday:  Ribbon-cutting and grand opening of Ascent Solar’s new world headquarters and manufacturing facility in Thornton, which will result in 200 new jobs over the next couple of years

Gov. Ritter Applauds President Obama's Inaugural Address

President Obama | 1.20.09- for the Grateful Web

Gov. Ritter issued the following statement after witnessing President Obama's historic inaugural address:

"This has been a spectacular event. Everyone I've talked to has described a deep emotional connection to Barack Obama as well as a passion for the kind of hope, change and promise he represents. President Obama was extremely articulate, honest and direct about the country's economic challenges, while also noting that we are a country whose character is marked and defined by resilience. He urged us to rediscover that core just as we have found it time and again over the course of American history.

"I was also struck by his message to the rest of the world. Under President Obama's leadership, we will rebuild a bridge between the United States and other nations. To our enemies, he vowed that we will not back down, and to those who wish to work with us, we will move forward together.

"I look forward to strengthening the federal-state partnership with the new Obama administration as we set about the difficult work of rebuilding our economy and overcoming the many other challenges facing America today and in the years to come

Gov. Ritter Statement on Interior Dept Investigation

Big Oil & The GOP: screwing us literally & figuratively- for the Grateful Web

Gov. Bill Ritter (Colorado) issued the following statement today in response to the federal investigation into allegations of gross misconduct by Interior Department and oil industry employees:

 

"This is obviously an extremely serious revelation. It warrants a thorough investigation, and if appropriate, the prosecution of anyone who has broken the law.

 

"The investigation also must closely examine how much this type of corruption has cost American – and Colorado – taxpayers. The oil-and-gas industry already benefits from taxpayer-funded subsidies, so the question is: how much has this scandal cost us in lost revenue?

 

"This is exactly why we need a federal government that partners with states like Colorado to craft a responsible energy policy for the future, not a federal government mired in corruption."

GOV. RITTER STATEMENT ON OIL SHALE P.E.I.S.

support the Natural Resources Defense Council- for the Grateful Web

Gov. Bill Ritter issued the following statement today in response to the U.S. Department of Interior's publishing of a final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for commercial oil shale development:

"As the national debate over America's energy future continues, we must be clear that Colorado is committed to helping meet America's energy needs. We are issuing about 35 new oil and gas drilling permits a day. We are building a New Energy Economy that is bringing thousands of new jobs to Colorado. And our research institutions are developing cutting-edge, new energy technologies.

"But with the Department of Interior's action today, the federal government has once again failed to act as a responsible partner for Colorado. The Bush Administration is engaging in last-minute maneuvering in its waning days rather than developing a comprehensive, meaningful and responsible long-term energy policy for America's future.

"Finalizing an Environmental Impact Statement without any clear understanding of the environmental, community, economic and energy impacts of commercial-scale oil shale development is irresponsible, short-sighted and premature. This does nothing to address gas prices at the pump today and has the potential to do much more harm than good."

Governors Ritter & Schwarzenegger Launch EcoDriving Campaign

- for the Grateful Web

Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter and California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger today joined the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers to kick off a new EcoDriving campaign to save consumers money at the pump, reduce fuel use and cut carbon emissions.

"The EcoDriving campaign offers easy actions that all of us can take – starting today, right now – to save money, reduce our dependence on foreign oil and benefit the environment," Gov. Ritter said. "By adopting EcoDriving tips, we can lower our fuel costs by 15 percent or more. And these are easy, common-sense driving and maintenance tips, like avoiding rapid starts and stops, using cruise control, reducing idling, and knowing when it's best to use your air conditioner."

Colorado and California are the first two states to support the consumer awareness campaign, details of which are available at the interactive website www.EcoDrivingUSA.com. Gov. Schwarzenegger appeared at today's news conference at the Colorado Convention Center via a live satellite feed from California.

"You can save money and save the environment by driving green," said Dave McCurdy, president and CEO of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers. "Through EcoDriving, 10 top automakers and the states of California and Colorado have found we share an important commitment, and we commend Gov. Schwarzenegger and Gov. Ritter for their leadership in engaging consumers in green driving."

"Today's automobiles are really computers on wheels, with more than 3,000 interactive parts operating as a complex system," McCurdy added. "The more you know about your machine, the better you can reduce fuel use and CO2 emissions."

With 240 million vehicles on the road in the United States, the benefits of EcoDriving could be significant:

·       - If just half of all drivers nationwide practiced moderate levels of EcoDriving, annual CO2 emissions could be reduced by about 100 million tons, or the equivalent of heating and powering 8.5 million households.

·       -  If all Americans practiced EcoDriving, it would be equal to 450 billion miles traveled on our roadways without generating any CO2 emissions.  That's 1,500 CO2-free miles for every man, woman, and child in the United States each year.

Sample EcoDriving practices include: 

·       - Not tailgating, knowing the proper way to accelerate and brake, and using synchronized traffic lights to a driver's advantage, driving at the optimum highway speed, understanding when to use air conditioning and much more.

Sample maintenance practices include:

·       - Knowing which motor oil to use, understanding the importance of proper tire pressure and what affects tire pressure, understanding aerodynamics and much more.

In conjunction with the unveiling of EcoDriving, the National Automobile Dealers Association announced that September will be free "Green Check-up Month" nationwide.

The EcoDriving interactive website, www.EcoDrivingUSA.com, will help drivers learn practical tips to improve their mileage and reduce their carbon footprint. The site includes a video guide to EcoDriving, an "EcoCalculator" to determine benefits for individuals or states, a Virtual Road Test and a variety of educational tools.

Alliance members hope to engage all 50 states and major consumer organizations in EcoDriving.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers is a trade association of 10 car and light truck manufacturers including BMW Group, Chrysler, Ford Motor Company, General Motors, Mazda, Mercedes-Benz, Mitsubishi Motors, Porsche, Toyota and Volkswagen.

GOV. RITTER EMBARKS TODAY ON CLIMATE EXPEDITION

Norwegian Arctic- for the Grateful Web

Following this week's G8 Summit, during which world leaders addressed the pressing issue of global warming, Gov. Bill Ritter (Colorado) announced he is embarking today on a weeklong climate-change expedition to the Norwegian Arctic.

The expedition, which runs through July 19, was organized and is being hosted by the Aspen Institute, National Geographic Society and Lindblad Expeditions. Gov. Ritter will be joining dozens of climate experts, Arctic specialists and leaders of industry, government, culture, religion and philanthropy aboard the National Geographic ship Endeavour.

The expedition sponsors invited Gov. Ritter to attend, present his Colorado Climate Action Plan and participate in policy discussions throughout the trip, including a panel on innovative leadership and climate change.

"Climate change is one of the most important issues of our time," Gov. Ritter said. "This is a challenge that requires unprecedented global cooperation and partnerships. This expedition offers a unique opportunity to exchange information, strategies and insights with a very diverse group of experts and leaders, and to see the impacts of climate change first-hand."

Gov. Ritter issued the Colorado Climate Action Plan in November. The Plan calls for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 levels by 20 percent by 2020 and 80 percent by 2050.

"Addressing climate change is extremely important to Colorado because our quality of life and so much of our economy – such as tourism, the ski industry, rafting, fishing and agriculture – are tied to our climate," Gov. Ritter said. "With these challenges also come opportunities, including economic and job-creation opportunities. Colorado's future very much depends on how we move forward, and it's vital that we have a leadership role."      

Over the past two years, the National Geographic Society's explorers, experts and photographers have participated on several Lindblad Expeditions trips, with a special focus on education and conservation. The Aspen Institute also has created a "Dialogue and Commission on Arctic Climate Change" to identify how action can be taken to strengthen and enhance responsibilities for a shared and sustainable future of the Arctic.

Some of the scientific experts on the expedition:

·         Sally Benson, executive director, Global Climate & Energy Project, Stanford University.

·         Robert Corell, director, Global Change Program, Heinz Center for Science, Economics and the Environment, and former chair of the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment.

·         Julian Dowdeswell, director, Scott Polar Research Institute, Cambridge University.

·         Professor Thomas Heller, Stanford University.

·         Henry "Jake" Jacoby, professor of management and co-director, MIT Joint Program on the Science & Policy of Global Change.

·         Michael Oppenheimer, Albert G. Milbank professor of Geosciences and International Affairs, Princeton University.

·         Professor Stefan Rahmstorf, Potsdam University, Institute for Climate Impact Research.

GOV. RITTER ANNOUNCES SOLAR INNOVATION GRANT FUNDING

embrace solar energy- for the Grateful Web

Gov. Ritter today announced that the Governor's Energy Office (GEO) is seeking grant applicants for $350,000 in incentives for solar innovation projects. The "Solar Innovation Grant" funds are being made available through the Clean Energy Fund. 

"These innovation grants will help us continue to grow our solar industry by increasing development and infrastructure. They will allow us to continue advancing Colorado's New Energy Economy and bring good jobs, revenue and clean power to our state," Gov. Ritter said.

Under GEO's stewardship, the Solar Innovation Grant will be used to support programs that can overcome financial, educational and technical barriers and lead to greater solar electric and solar thermal technologies in the residential and commercial sectors. 

GEO is looking to fund projects from partners such as utilities, homebuilders, installers and system integrators, lenders and financial institutions, non-profits and trade associations. For the competitive application process, GEO will consider funding requests for the following purposes:

Education: Applicants will provide educational resources to targeted sectors with the goal of expanding the quantity and quality of solar installations in Colorado.

Integrated Design: Applicants will address opportunities to incorporate solar technology into the commercial and production home sectors in both new and existing infrastructure. 

Utility Programs: Applicants in this category will work to improve the viability of solar technology as a means to offset energy and power demands at the utility level. GEO is soliciting innovative solutions to promote solar technology at the utility level. 

Market Analysis & Policy Recommendations: Applicants will identify policy barriers to the wider implementation of solar technology in Colorado and present solutions in the form of a comprehensive policy report.  

Financing: Applicants will present innovative financing models that will increase the affordability of integrating solar technology in the residential and commercial sectors.

Individual awards will not exceed $50,000 and applications are due by April 30. To download an application, click here. To learn more, visit GEO's website:  www.colorado.gov/energy.

Gov Ritter Announces Incentives for Woody Biomass Projects

woody biomass- for the Grateful Web

Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter today announced that the Governor's Energy Office (GEO) is seeking applicants for $100,000 in incentives for bio-heating projects that use community woody biomass.

The funds are being made available through the Clean Energy Fund for a "Community Biomass for Thermal Usage Program." Bio-heating projects support wildfire mitigation efforts, provide alternatives to slash pile buns, and build local wood-fuel markets.

GEO is seeking projects that support fuel-reduction, restoration activities and local collection sites and that demonstrate a long term availability of biomass supply. Also, GEO is interested in supporting projects that use annual forest thinnings, wood waste, including bark beetle kill, and urban waste. Although biomass can be widely defined and has numerous heating applications, this funding is only available for woody biomass for commercial and industrial projects.   

"Using Colorado's large woody biomass supplies is a clean way to produce heat while addressing problems associated with beetle kill and using waste products from fire mitigation efforts," Gov. Ritter said. "By offering financial and technical assistance to projects that use community produced wood chips or manufactured pellets, we are helping our communities participate in the New Energy Economy while addressing forest health issues and promoting local economic development. The long-term benefits are greater energy security, environmental security and economic security for our communities and our state."

RITTER BREAKS GROUND ON NATION'S 2nd-LARGEST WIND FARM

Wind Farm in Colorado- for the Grateful Web

Gov. Bill Ritter joined FPL Energy, Xcel Energy, local officials and about 200 other guests here today to break ground on what will be the nation's second-largest wind generation facility.

Ritter was joined by Mike O'Sullivan, senior vice president of development at FPL Energy, and Karen Hyde, managing director of Resource Planning and Acquisitions at Xcel Energy.

"Today we are making history," Gov. Ritter said. "This project will be the largest wind farm in the state and second-largest in the nation. It will have the longest transmission line in the world. Along with our tremendous agricultural crops, Colorado is the 11th windiest and 6th sunniest state in the nation. Our intellectual resources are second-to-none.

"Combined, all of this says that Colorado is well on its way to becoming the renewable energy capital of the country and a leader in the New Energy Economy," Gov. Ritter added.

O'Sullivan said, "Colorado is taking an important leadership role in the growth of wind energy in the United States . The Peetz Table Wind Energy Center will help the state realize its enormous potential for economic growth through the generation of clean, renewable energy."

" Xcel Energy continues to add more wind power to our existing system. By purchasing the energy from FPL at this project and from three others, we will reach Colorado 's renewable energy standard seven years early," said Hyde. "Wind power is a valuable part of our generation mix in Colorado . With the new renewable energy legislation requiring 20 percent of our power come from renewable energy, we feel that it will continue to grow in importance."

Peetz Table Wind Energy Center Facts:

Construction of 267 General Electric turbines should be complete by the end of 2007.

They will generate 400 megawatts of electricity, enough to power 120,000 homes a year.

Xcel Energy will purchase the energy under a long-term contract.

FPL Energy is constructing a 78-mile-long transmission line to connect the Peetz Table facility to the power grid at Xcel Energy's Pawnee substation near Brush. This will be longest power transmission line in the world.

At the height of construction, the project will employ between 300-350 workers.

When complete, the Peetz Table Wind Energy Center will have about 20 full-time employees and have a significant positive impact on the local economy.