Successful Supplemental Environmental Projects (SEPs)

People standing in a wavy line in a green field

Pueblo school district 70 greenhouses


SEP category - environmental education and public health and safety.

SEP funds provided - $157,320.

Matching funds - $1,473.89.

County of violation and SEP - Pueblo.

Description and project outcomes

Pueblo School District 70 installed solar greenhouses at four schools in the district. The schools included elementary, middle, and high schools. The district included nutritional and educational aspects in curriculums that include the greenhouses. The project introduced students to the local and sustainable food movement. Students now have hands-on experience in agriculture. The students learn the use and benefits of using renewable energy in the production of a product.

School staff created teaching materials and methods to support student learning. Students learn the link between agricultural practices and human health. They also learn about nutrition, sustainability, community, and the environment. School staff included agriculture in science, math, social studies, literature, and art classes. Food grown in the greenhouses will be served in the lunch rooms.

Local volunteer engagement in conservation and restoration projects 2022


SEP category - environmental restoration and environmental education.

SEP funds provided - $220,000.

County of violation and SEP - Weld.

Description and project outcomes

Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado designated a new Weld County-based Volunteer & Partnership Coordinator position. This was created in partnership with government and non-profit partners. The position increased volunteer management. This helps partners care for their parks, trails, and open spaces.

As a result of this position and SEP, 22 projects and two (2) trainings were delivered for seven (7) partners. They managed 385 volunteers who provided 2,558 hours of donated labor. Additionally, six (6) community meetings were held to discuss project needs, priorities, and outcomes.

Restoration outcomes:

  • About 15 acres of noxious plants removed.
  • Constructed 350 feet of fence, 4 campground pads, and 11 timber steps, and installed 5 bat boxes, and 3 erosion control devices at Jackson Lake State Park to improve recreational infrastructure and protect fragile environmental resources from damage by park visitors.
  • Seeded 3.25 acres to help restore damaged riparian habitat.
  • Over 880 trees and shrubs planted.
  • 3000 feet of fencing restored at Pawnee National Grassland to serve as a non-lethal prairie dog population control measure.
  • Much more!

Residential energy efficiency improvements and sustainable urban agriculture


SEP category - pollution prevention, pollution reduction, and public health and safety.

SEP funds provided - $113,680.

County of violation and SEP - Adams.

Description and project outcomes

Two projects were completed with this funding. The first project was an energy efficiency project. Groundwork Denver provided outreach, energy audits, energy efficiency measures, and client education. This supports lower-income Northeast Denver and Commerce City residents in reducing their energy bills and preventing pollution associated with natural gas and electricity usage.


  • 106 low-cost energy efficiency upgrades installed.
  • Energy savings of 2,529 kWh and 2,864 therms of natural gas saved per year, and a resulting CO2 emissions reduction of 18.8 tons per year.
  • Reduced carbon monoxide exposure for 4 households where CO production was unacceptably high in combustion appliances, as per building performance industry (BPI) standards.
  • Ensured that each home (25 homes) has two working smoke and CO detectors.

In the second project, Groundwork Denver grew produce in their 1,800-square-foot hydroponic greenhouse. They distributed that food locally.


  • 6,567 pounds of produce grown and distributed.
  • 1,926 CSA boxes distributed.
  • 271 community supported agriculture boxes distributed to low-income or at-risk families.
  • 91,943 gallons of water savings.

Energy solutions for Globeville, Elyria, Swansea (GES)


SEP category - pollution prevention.

SEP funds provided - $163,080.

Matching funds - $237,296.

Counties of violation and SEP - Denver and Adams.

Description and project outcomes

Energy Outreach Colorado and several partners provided a two-part SEP. Part one was weatherization with energy efficiency projects. Part two was enrollment in a community solar garden.

The organization provided energy and safety audits for 35 homes. They installed items such as LED lights, high-efficiency plumbing and HVAC equipment, programmable thermostats, insulation, air sealing, and evaporative coolers. This resulted in:

  • 276 dekatherms of gas savings and 22,612kWh of electricity savings.
    • Resulting in a reduction of 67,560 pounds of CO2 emissions.

Thirty-two (32) homes in the neighborhood were given free community solar garden subscriptions. This opportunity will reduce their electric bill by at least 50% for the following five years. The energy and emissions savings include:

  • Production of 1,305,727 kWh of solar energy for 5 years.
    • Resulting in a reduction of 2,040,038 pounds of CO2 emissions avoided.

Jefferson County area household hazardous waste collection


SEP category - pollution prevention, pollution reduction, and public health and safety.

SEP funds provided - $5,120.

Matching funds - $1,405.

County of violation and SEP - Jefferson.

Description and project outcomes

This project provided money to the Rooney Road Recycling Center Authority in Jefferson County. They expanded services to approximately 68 more residents. They have a subsidized rate of $75 per visitor. The center provides proper recycling, destruction, and/or disposal of household hazardous waste. They accept electronic waste, household chemicals, paints, propane cylinders, automotive products, and more. The project collected about 5,615 pounds of household chemicals for recycling and disposal.


Elizabeth Scherer, SEP Coordinator