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With just 18,000 trees now affected, it’s hardly a problem by the standards of Colorado and British Columbia, both areas with broad swaths of red mountainsides. “To suggest we’re on the edge of having the valley turn red I think is premature,” said Steve Donelon, a state tourism and recreation official.
Still, it was just a dozen years ago that officials in Colorado counted bark beetle trees by the hundreds.
Grizzlies test bear-proof lids
ASPEN, Colo. – Inmates at the Colorado State Penitentiary in Canon City have a perhaps odd connection with that slice of paradise called Aspen during the summer. They make trash containers that are now required by city authorities who have been trying to reduce the lure of garbage to bears.
For some years, the city has had a growing problem of marauding bears, some of them now so brazen they let themselves into houses and condominiums when no garbage is available elsewhere.
To help break the bear-people connection, the city now requires bear-resistant containers or, if the containers are kept outside day and night, bear-proof containers. The difference, explains the Aspen Times, is in the armouring — and also the cost. Resistant containers can be made of plastic, but bear-proof containers are of metal.
Prices range from $170 for the plastic bear-resistant containers to $450 for the sturdy metal containers.
One manufacturer of bear-proof containers, BearSaver of Ontario, Calif. proves the sturdiness of its containers by filling them with trout and honey or peanut butter on the lids in an enclosed area with grizzly bears. The grizzlies have an hour to penetrate the containers. If they fail, the containers are good for public consumption.
Bear-proof trash containers placed on the streets of Aspen cost $750.
Park City re-examines bus
PARK CITY, Utah – Park City is located only 30 miles from Salt Lake City, connected by Interstate 80. The highway generally is not badly congested, which helps make for an easier time of finding employees.
Still, with gas now $4 a gallon, new thought is being given to a bus shuttle connecting the resort with the metropolis. A similar bus was attempted in 2006, but failed for lack of riders. There appear to be no leading theories as to why the bus lacked riders, but local officials are willing to give it another shot.