Good morning southern Colorado and here's what you need to know on your Friday, April 23.
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It's a trend people may start to notice in places across the country, businesses are getting third-party COVID-19 safety inspections and placing safety stickers on the front window, but the experts say some stickers are more meaningful than others.
Paul Medieros of the National Sanitation Foundation says COVID-19 safe stickers and certifications are already being used by businesses to earn the trust of visitors. If you decide to travel to various communities and states these stickers are something you'll likely see.
If you do see a sticker on a business claiming it is COVID-19 safe, many of the recognized third-party sanitation companies that issue them will have a website or a QR code that you can scan to get more information about that recognition and how the business secured it.
If the sticker doesn't have a website, the business name, or dates of approval or expiration on it, the sticker could have come from anywhere. It may be worth asking an employee for more information if you're concerned.
NSF International is already working with businesses across the country and would be happy to answer any questions you have.
Humidity is a bit higher today and that will be a precursor to showers later on. There are clouds and light showers moving in this morning from the southwest. The mountains are seeing snow and the lower elevations will see sprinkles from this activity this morning.
Temperatures this afternoon will be cool but comfortable. Expect a high of 55 in Colorado Springs, 60 in Pueblo, 58 in Canon City, and 45 in Woodland Park.
There is a wave of energy moving through the state today and that will pair with the higher humidity and lead to rain and thunderstorms this afternoon. These will be fairly isolated along I-25, moving east into the plains and there may be some small non-severe hail in storms as they gain intensity today.
A new scientific analysis from Colorado State University (CSU) measured greenhouse gas emissions produced from growing cannabis in a standard indoor environment after legalization from state to state. It found that indoor cannabis cultivation leads to a considerable amount of emissions, no matter where it is grown throughout the country.
However, a Southern Colorado indoor cannabis grow, designed for sustainability, is excited to see more research being done on the carbon footprint of the industry.
Hailey Summers, a PhD candidate in mechanical engineering at CSU, said the work on this report began around two years ago, and the publication process took about a year. The group developed a model that simulates conditions of indoor grows representative of those they toured in Colorado, and applied it across the country. "
Regardless of location, the analysis found that HVAC systems are the largest contributor to overall greenhouse gas emissions, followed by high-intensity grow lights. These tools help create an artificial climate for indoor plants.
The report also explains indoor cannabis grows can use carbon dioxide (CO2) to increase the photosynthetic activity of the plants, making them mature quicker. However, that supplemental CO2 adds to greenhouse gas emissions.
Summers said the study conducted a holistic approach, looking at things like a fertilizer's manufacturing process, adding any emissions produced at that time to the total tabulation.
The Great American Cleanup is happening all across the county and coming back to southern Colorado this Saturday. Local organizers have outlined plans for this year's cleanup events and right now they need volunteers at 18 different locations throughout the Pikes Peak region.
Site coordinators will host volunteer check-in sites beginning at 9 a.m. at all locations Saturday. Bags and safety vests will be provided. Volunteers should bring their own gloves, sunscreen and refillable water bottles. Kids under 16 must be supervised by an adult.
For more information and to sign up to volunteer, visit http://www.gacppp.com/
The 2021 Polar Plunge is taking place this weekend, Saturday April 24. All the money raised at the event will benefit nearly 6,000 Special Olympics athletes in the Pikes Peak region.
Among them are the 200 athletes who are part of track and field teams in the area. Their season kicked off in April, and they practice two days a week. There are more than 20 sports to participate in, like swimming, soccer, golf, and tennis. Sports are offered year-round. It costs about $200 for one athlete to participate in three sports a year, which many of the athletes do.
"My favorite part is making friends, and my favorite part is running and playing," said Cyrus Prater, 9 years old. "Before COVID-19 started, I used to do basketball and I was pretty good at it."
For more information about Special Olympics or the Polar Plunge, click here.