In the late 1970s, local citizens groups sprouted across the Western Slope of Colorado in response to threats to their local communities – coal and molybdenum mining, oil shale development, and plans for powerlines were a few of the concerns. As the scope of their concerns broadened, members of these local groups decided to band together to create a unified citizens voice. From these groups and their members, the Western Colorado Congress formed in 1980.
In over three decades, Western Colorado Congress members have tackled — and won on — a wide variety of issues. For instance, we have:
- Safeguarded the health of people on the Western Slope by blocking the creation of a radioactive waste dump
- Protected consumer interests by preventing excessive utility rate hikes
- Added to the legacy of future generations by winning wilderness status for low-elevation canyon country
- Stopped corporations from polluting our air and water in many of our local communities
- Ensured more sustainable management of our public lands by limiting aspen clearcutting
- Passed legislation enabling farmers and food entrepreneurs to sell cottage foods directly to consumers
- Enhanced our members’ abilities to participate in our democracy over the long haul by providing trainings and real-life experience
Because Western Colorado Congress takes on such a variety of issues, it has come to mean different things to different people. However, WCC has always maintained its commitment to organizing citizens on issues that directly affect their lives.