Mountain News: Snowmobilers died high-marking 

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The way money could be made is by tapping the methane, which is a primary constituent of natural gas. The methane from the West Elk alone is enough to heat 39,000 houses or a city about the size of Grand Junction, Colo.

"There has to be a way to make the methane marketable, either through electricity that can be pumped back into the grid or as natural gas going to market," says Wolcott.

Something similar was done in Utah. There, the methane from the Aberdeen Mine, located near Price, has been captured and, after purification, introduced into pipelines that transport the gas to markets. The financing in that case was done by a triangle of partners, including the coal-mine owner, a gas company, and the City of Aspen and Pitkin County, which paid carbon off-set money in order to help make the finances work.

Noise squabble verging on feud

CRESTED BUTTE, Colo. - Call it a squabble verging on a feud. Neighbours of The Pub, a bar in Crested Butte, say there's just too much racket. "I'm a partier, but I can't sleep through this," said Priscila Banks, who lives nearby. "And I can sleep through anything," she added.

Owners of The Pub insist they have mostly complied with the rules, which mandate noise be kept to 60 decibels or less. That, they say, is in line with the noise threshold specified in other resort towns. A creek that tumbles through the town, immediately behind the bar, is louder, says bar co-owner Chris Werderitch.

Peter Giannini, described by the Crested Butte News as a community gadfly, said viability of the core business district is at issue. Anybody living there "should expect to be subjected to more noise. There are tradeoffs living in that area, and increased noise is one of them. To make it harder for tourists to have fun is a mistake, especially in this economy."

Of course, there was a counter-argument to that: "Noise isn't the only way to have fun," said another neighbour, Cricket Farrington. "In fact, I'll bet if you lowered the decibels, people inside wouldn't even notice it."

The town council, reports the Crested Butte News , doesn't want to change any laws, but is leaning on the operators of The Pub to work out a solution with neighbours. "Now, go have a group hug out in the hallway," said Alan Bernholtz, the mayor.

Community gardening catching on

DURANGO, Colo. - Community gardening is catching on in Durango, in response to what officials believe is the poor economy as well as the persistent "buy local" message.

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