Park City election candidates to debate climate topics

Oct 11, 2021

With climate-dependent recreation being one of Park City’s major industries, the local climate activism group will host a debate for Park City mayoral and city council candidates this week.

Credit KPCW

The Wasatch Back chapter of the Citizens’ Climate Lobby is hosting the candidate forum on Thursday evening. It’ll run from 6 to 7:30 in the evening and will be held via Zoom.

“The focus is on climate solutions,” says Sebastian Nicholas, Climate Lobby member. “Some people may see it as a single issue, but it’s an issue that will impact everything, from the tourism industry and how winters are here in Park City to the quality of the air we breathe, the risks of wildfires.”

He says his organization works with local governments because of the broader impact even small cities like Park City can have.

“It’s an important issue, and the solutions that are proposed at the local level have far-reaching impacts across a much broader range of issues. It’s very important to hear what candidates are proposing in terms of their policies and plans for the city and for voters to get an idea of what those proposals are, who’s more serious, who’s thinking about policies that make sense for Park City to both mitigate emissions and adapt to future climate change,” Nicholas says.

The moderators will be Climate Lobby Wasatch Back Co-Chair Lauren Barros and Park City High School student Montana Burrack. They’ll ask questions that are submitted by the public.

Barros says city government has already shown it’s capable of having a positive climate impact. She mentioned both the city and county’s endorsements of taxing carbon emissions as an example.

She also touted the Mountain Towns 2030 Summit held in Park City in 2019 that brought together cities, nonprofits, and companies from throughout the Intermountain West that are interested in protecting the environment.

“I think the city government’s really done a lot just in the last four years,” Barros says. “Many cities and counties have signed up to learn more and put some money into hopefully transitioning to 100% renewable energy, and I think when it’s all said and done, it’ll transition the power of Utah to be around 23% of on renewable energy.”

As for the future, Barros says she’s hoping the city will come up with a specific plan for businesses to be sustainable.

Nicholas hopes that can take the form of directives to developers to incorporate energy-efficient technology in future projects.

For access to join the debate virtually, visit one of the Wasatch Back chapter’s social media pages.

They can be found with usernames CCLWasatchBack on Twitter and Instagram or Citizens Climate Lobby Park City/Wasatch Back on Facebook.

To submit a question for the candidates, email

The Park City mayoral candidates are incumbent Mayor Andy Beerman and Council Member Nann Worel. The city council candidates are incumbent Councilor Tim Henney, business owner Tana Toly, and consultant Jeremy Rubell.

Ballots for the November 2 election are expected to arrive in mailboxes this week.