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Energy and Environmental Policy (E2P) at the Independence Institute

By all measures, life is better. Because of our ability to safely, responsibly and efficiently develop natural resources, our standard of living is up, life expectancy is up, and our environment is cleaner. Individuals prosper while also enjoying a healthy planet. If we create an atmosphere where human potential flourishes and we dare to imagine, then everyone can reap the benefits of affordable, reliable, abundant, and safe power and revel in the beauty of a thriving environment.

Our Vision

Access to affordable, reliable, abundant, safe energy and a clean environment are not mutually exclusive. At E2P we envision a Colorado where every person is in control of his or her own energy and environmental destiny. Private property owners are in the best position to protect their land and environment, and the choice of energy resources and how they are utilized should come from the demands of an innovative and free market.

What is the role of government? To remain neutral, let markets work, let individuals innovate, limit regulations, and refrain from picking winners and losers.

Our Principles

  • People first
  • Celebrate prosperity
  • Innovation over regulation
  • Commonsense conservation
  • Primacy of private property rights
  • Results over rhetoric
  • Reject cynicism


Free Market Energy and Environmental Policy

  • Embraces our entrepreneurial spirit and optimism that we can have affordable power, responsible domestic energy development, and a clean environment.
  • Puts individuals in the driver’s seat and allows them to control their own energy future.
  • Lets the choice of energy resources come from the demands of the free market, and not from the preferences of policymakers, lobbyists, or special interest groups.
  • Champions private property rights.
  • Challenges the 80-year-old, monopoly utility model of electricity generation and distribution.
  • Puts states ahead of Washington, D.C.
  • Encourages limited and consistent regulations.
  • Rejects taxpayer funded subsidies.
  • Doesn’t pick winners and losers.
  • Welcomes transparency.


Latest Posts

  • Electricity Reform In Colorado: A Resource Guide

    • July 20, 1999

    Deregulation of telecommunications, natural gas, and transportation saved American consumers billions of dollars, created new choices among sellers and spurred numerous new services in the bargain. Ending the artificial monopoly that electric utilities hold should deliver similar benefits to Colorado consumers.

  • Environmental Audits: Colorado Carrots versus Federal Sticks

    • January 1, 1998

    Environmental regulation has experienced tremendous growth in the last quarter century. Much of this growth has occurred at the federal level, resulting in a heavily centralized, command-and-control bureaucracy overseeing virtually all aspects of environmental protection, including enforcement. State and local governments are a significant part of the enforcement scheme, but under strict federal oversight. This approach to achieving compliance has several limitations, and is beginning to show signs of obsolescence. The current system is inflexible, inefficient, costly, unduly adversarial, and does not maximize environmental protection.

  • Resolving the Conflict Between Man and the Environment: A Model in the Philippines

    • June 22, 1994

    The Philippine eagle population has declined from an estimated total of 500 in 1981 to just 63 today. The eagles’ natural habitat has been depleted by the economic needs of the millions of Filipinos who sell forest products or farm using slash and burn techniques.

    A private group, The Philippine Eagle Foundation (PEFI), has developed a program which has improved the economic life of the local residents while preserving the habitat of the eagles. Their efforts illuminate the importance of maintaining biodiversity if natural ecosystems are to flourish.

  • Federal Land Acquisitions Need Better Cost Controls

    • May 15, 1993

    IP-20-93 (May 1993) Author: David Petteys PDF of full Issue Paper Scribd version of full Issue Paper Independence Institute Issue Briefs are short essays dealing with public policy questions. The Issues Briefs are meant to be suggestive rather than definitive, and to serve as starting points for further thoughts and inquiry. “Our endangered plant and

  • Look to Markets, not Bureaucrats for More Recycling

    • March 24, 1993

    Legislative Waste Control Efforts could Prove Wasteful IP-8-93 (March 1993) Author: James P. McMahon PDF of full Issue Paper Scribd version of full Issue Paper In Brief… Recycling in the United States has hit record levels in recent years. While market-based incentives can help drive recycling even higher, some environmentalists support increased bureaucratization and regulation

  • Clearing the Air on Carbon Monoxide: Fatal Scientific Flaws in the EPA Crackdown on Denver and Other

    • May 1, 1988

    Denver is one of 59 U.S. cities that are under scrutiny by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, facing economic sanctions in the form of withheld federal highway funds and pollution control grants. This action is being contemplated by the government because these cities have not achieved compliance with EPAs ambient air quality standard for carbon monoxide (CO), as mandated by the Clean Air Act.