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AEA Statement on Secretary Ryan Zinke’s Resignation

WASHINGTON – In response to the announcement that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke will step down at the end of the year, Thomas J. Pyle, President of the American Energy Alliance, made the following statement:

“In the two years that Zinke has led the Department of the Interior, he has served the country in a way we haven’t seen from the federal government’s land use agency since the days of President Ronald Reagan. Streamlining permitting under the National Environmental Policy Act, reforming regulations on methane venting and flaring, and reorganizing Bears Ears National Monument are just a few of his many significant contributions. Most importantly, Zinke has unleashed American energy potential by tapping into the vast resource reserves on federal lands and opening up previously unexplored areas to development.

Secretary Zinke’s record stands as a testament to the Trump Administration’s America First focus. He has taken a common sense approach at Interior that benefits all Americans by appropriately balancing the many different missions within the department. We look forward to working with his successor to ensure that the Department of Interior remains focused on unlocking the natural resources on federal lands and unleashing American energy potential.”

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

AEA Applauds POTUS for Reform of WOTUS

WASHINGTON – This morning, the EPA announced a proposed rulemaking to repeal the 2015 Waters of the United States (WOTUS) definition under the Clean Water Act. The rule would fully repeal the definition of the Obama administration regarding which waterways and wetlands are to be considered under the Clean Water Act. AEA President Thomas Pyle made the following statement: 

“Historically, the ‘Waters of the United States’ definition has been abused to increase the size and scope of the federal government and violate the property rights of landowners under the guise of protecting our country’s waterways. Despite the Clean Water Act affirming up front the primacy of the states in regulation of water, the scope of the federal government’s jurisdiction has been a source of litigation and controversy for decades. One administration after another, both Republican and Democrat, has sought to invade the states’ proper primacy in local water regulation, and the Supreme Court has rightfully struck down these overly broad definitions.

The 2015 WOTUS definition created by the Obama administration sought to go even further, writing a rule so broad that it effectively stretched federal regulatory power to virtually every bit of water in the country. Unsurprisingly, that rule has remained mired in litigation ever since. Rather than continuing to subject landowners to this uncertainty, the Trump administration is wise to repeal the 2015 rule in order to more accurately conform with the plain text of the the Clean Water Act as well as previous Supreme Court decisions.”

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

EPA Rule Ends Obama’s War on Economic Reality

WASHINGTON – This afternoon, the EPA proposed a rule lifting carbon dioxide emission requirements for new and modified coal power plants, a reform of an Obama-era rule which effectively mandated presently uneconomic carbon capture technology.

American Energy Alliance President Thomas Pyle made the following statement:

“The Trump Administration’s move to ease Obama-era restrictions on clean coal technology is yet another action towards bringing Obama’s ‘War on Coal’ to an end, and is fully within EPA’s power to do. The Obama-era rule defied economic reality, making the opening of new coal plants all but impossible by requiring expensive, impractical carbon capture technology.

For the last decade, regulations have been strangling the coal industry, which provides millions of Americans with affordable and reliable energy. In 2008, President Obama famously said ‘…if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can; it’s just that it will bankrupt them…’ We are pleased that the Trump Administration has taken yet another action to stop the political and regulatory assault on beautiful, clean coal.”

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

End It, Don’t Extend It

NERA Study Shows Lifting Electric Vehicle Manufacturers’ Cap Would Inflict Harm on U.S. Households  

WASHINGTON – Today, the American Energy Alliance delivered to lawmakers on Capitol Hill a study showing the economic effects of eliminating the manufacturers’ cap on the plug-in electric vehicle tax credit. The study, conducted by NERA Economic Modeling and commissioned by Flint Hills Resources, concluded that, on net, the high costs of raising the 200,000 manufacturers’ cap in the EV federal tax credit would more than outweigh consumers’ financial savings. Congress is continuing to negotiate a “tax extenders” package that could include a provision to lift the 200,000 vehicle cap and extend the program through at least 2022. The American Energy Alliance intends to score any “tax extenders” package that includes this special interest giveaway.

The study’s key takeaways include:

  • If the manufacturers’ cap were removed, the study foresees greater burdens on taxpayers and higher electricity rates to pay for EV infrastructure as utilities recover their costs plus a rate of return through a fixed charge on customer’s bills.
  • Eliminating the manufacturers’ cap on the EV tax credit would result in the net present value reduction in personal income of all U.S. households of $95 billion or about $610 per household between 2020 and 2035.
  • Extending the tax credit would have a negligible impact on gasoline demand (<1% decrease by 2035), and therefore, does not reduce carbon emissions in any significant way.
  • A lifting of the cap would funnel wealth from the American public at large to a narrow segment of Americans: EV manufacturers and wealthy EV buyers.

The full NERA study can be read here.

A summary can be read here.

American Energy Alliance President Thomas Pyle made the following statement:

“As Tesla’s Elon Musk and GM’s Mary Barra continue to lobby Congress to extend the electric vehicle tax credit and eliminate the manufacturers’ cap, this study confirms what we have been arguing for years: the special interest giveaway is a burden on American families and does not improve their lives in any tangible way. Americans want to make their own choices about what cars to drive and they shouldn’t have to pay for an electric vehicle tax credit which has been shown to mostly benefit wealthy individuals.

If policymakers in Washington were to lift the manufactures’ cap provision of the tax credit, they would inflict further economic harm on American households to the tune of a $95 billion value reduction between 2020 and 2035. And to what end? The NERA study shows that the tax credit will have a negligible impact on gasoline demand and therefore, won’t improve the environment in any meaningful way. It’s time for this tax credit to be ended, not extended.”

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

Free Market Coalition Urges Congress: Don’t Extend the Electric Vehicle Tax Credit

WASHINGTON – In light of recent conversations in Washington surrounding the electric vehicle tax credit, this afternoon, a coalition of 28 free market policy groups, led by the American Energy Alliance, sent a letter to House and Senate leaders objecting to any expansion of the federal electric vehicle tax credit.

The letter encourages Republican congressional leaders to reject attempts by the EV lobby and their allies in Congress to slip a tax credit cap increase into upcoming legislative and extender packages.

American Energy Alliance President Thomas Pyle made the following statement:

“The electric vehicle tax credit was signed into law under the condition that it would be temporary and that it would only apply to the first 200,000 vehicles sold per manufacturer. The authors’ intension behind the law was to reduce the country’s dependence on foreign oil. The tax credit is no longer needed as America now leads the world in energy production. The time has come for the tax credit to end. Under no circumstances should the cap be lifted in this lame-duck session of Congress. We shouldn’t be giving handouts to wealthy individuals to offset the costs of their luxury vehicles.”

The letter was signed by the following organizations who share AEA’s objection to taxpayers footing the bill for another massive government handout:

American Energy Alliance | American Commitment | American Conservative Union | American Consumer Institute | Americans for Limited Government | Americans for Prosperity | Americans for Tax Reform | Caesar Rodney Institute | Center for Freedom and Prosperity | Civitas Institute | Competitive Enterprise Institute | Consumers Action for a Strong Economy | Council for Citizens Against Government Waste | E&E Legal Institute | Freedom Foundation for Minnesota | FreedomWorks | Frontiers of Freedom | Georgia Public Policy Foundation | Heartland Institute | Heritage Action | Hispanic Leadership Fund | Independence Institute | Less Government | Mississippi Center for Public Policy | National Black Chamber of Commerce | National Tax-Limitation Committee | Rio Grande Foundation| Taxpayers Protection Alliance

The letter sent to U.S. House leaders can be read here. The letter sent to U.S. Senate leaders can be read here.

For more on electric vehicles, click herehere, and here.

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

AEA Applauds President Trump’s Call to Eliminate EV Subsidies

WASHINGTON – This afternoon President Trump tweeted his intent to cut subsidies for electric vehicles. GM, which has been lobbying for an expansion of the federal tax credit, recently announced their intent to close a number of U.S. and Canadian plants. AEA applauds President Trump for opposing these costly federal subsidies. AEA President Thomas Pyle made the following statement:

President Trump is right to call for eliminating the costly federal subsidies going to electric vehicles, which were put in place to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Today, they are no longer needed since America is now leading the world in energy production.

The electric vehicle subsidy benefits a privileged few at the expense of all taxpayers. The tax credit subsidizes expensive vehicles that only a fraction of wealthy Americans want and aren’t necessarily better for the environment than modern internal combustion engines. Ending electric vehicle subsidies is a first step toward getting government out of the business of picking winners and losers, and instead forces all vehicles to compete for market share on a level playing field. We urge Congress to follow President Trump’s wishes and put these subsidies to an end once and for all during this lame duck session.”

Read more on EV subsidies:

AEA Coalition Against EV Subsidies

Commentary on EV Tax Credit Bills

Summer 2018 Survey on American’s Perceptions of EV Subsidies
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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

Energy Policy After the 2018 Midterms

Full PDF. 

The voters have spoken. It’s time to listen to them and focus on policies that expand the availability, affordability, and reliability of energy, rather than on policies that make energy more scarce, more expensive, and less reliable.

For partisans on either side, the 2018 midterm elections will go down as a mixed bag. Democrats won control of the House, though not by the landslide they hoped. Republicans gained seats in the Senate, though mostly at the expense of red-state Democrats who were on the defensive. At the state level, Democrats claimed numerous victories in governor’s races, but pending a couple races still to be called, those wins likely won’t even get them back to 50-50 parity.

On energy issues, however, the 2018 election results look clearer. At the state level, destructive anti-energy ballot measures were defeated in Arizona, Washington, and Colorado. Only Nevada and California stand as the outliers in trending negative, against favorable energy measures. Unfortunately, with the Democrats gaining control of the House of Representatives, a larger threat looms for those who stand for pro-energy policies. House Democrats will surely do everything in their power to thwart the president’s energy agenda. At the same time, the increased pro-energy majority in the Senate bodes well for the nomination prospects of conservative judges and administration officials. Overall, the 2018 elections may slow but will hopefully not reverse the positive energy policy environment of the last two years.

The Senate pro-energy majority increases

The Republican victories in North Dakota, Missouri, Indiana, and Florida all represent significant pro-energy shifts for the Senate. While the Democrats who lost would occasionally cross the aisle on the odd energy issue, the shift to the ‘R’ column is an unequivocal improvement in each case. Also important is the loss of Sen. Heller in Nevada. One of the most unreliable Republican senators on pro-market energy issues, he lately became the face of permanently extending the wasteful electric vehicle tax subsidy. In addition to the Heller loss, two other Republicans with inconsistent energy voting records, Senators Flake and Corker, have also been replaced. Tennessee Senator-elect Marsha Blackburn has a long record of staunchly pro-energy positions, representing a major upgrade. The exit of these three senators combined with the increased Republican majority means that future nominees and votes will be less likely to be held hostage or swayed by moderate Republican senators.

Republicans will likely increase their total to 53 seats in the Senate (including the likely victory in the Mississippi special election runoff). This increased Republican majority will be better able to overcome Democratic obstruction on nominees, which will mean more and stronger pro-energy officials making regulatory decisions.

Democrats narrowly take the House

While not unexpected, the flipping of the House of Representatives to Democratic control represents a serious setback to the energy progress we’ve made at the federal level since 2016.

The Democrats in Congress will make it their mission to try and drive up the costs of the electricity and transportation that Americans rely upon. Quite candidly, the party platform calls for the elimination of natural gas, coal, and oil from our society. We see this in a number of forms. One is the drive to marginalize the internal combustion engine through the use of taxpayer funds to subsidize expensive technologies like electric vehicles and the setting of impossible-to-reach mandates on fuel economy. Contrary to what they’d have you believe, these policies don’t help average people—they directly benefit the politically connected and the wealthy, while limiting transportation options for the rest of us.

Another front in this war on energy is electricity generation, where the Democrats will attempt to spend taxpayer money on their preferred sources of generation, namely, windmills and solar panels. The Democrats are “committed to getting 50 percent of our electricity from clean energy sources within a decade, with half a billion solar panels installed within four years and enough renewable energy to power every home in the country.” This flies in the face of reality, it will threaten the reliability of our electricity grid, and it will send electricity bills through the roof.

Fueled by the environmental left, today’s Democratic Party has unambiguously turned its back on abundant, affordable and reliable energy. The Democrat-controlled House will do whatever it takes to thwart the president’s progress towards unleashing our energy potential and deny American families the economic benefits that come from affordable and reliable domestic energy.

To add insult to injury, the Democrats have made it clear they will seek to single out conservative 501(c)4 organizations like the American Energy Alliance with unjust scrutiny and harassment. But we’ve stared down these challenges before, and we stand ready to do so again.

Fortunately, the Republican controlled Senate and the threat of a Presidential veto will at least contain the Democratic controlled House.
One other note about last night’s House results is the fate of the Climate Solutions Caucus (CSC). Combined with previously announced retirements, the CSC is set to lose at least 20 Republican members, including its co-founder and figurehead Rep. Carlos Curbelo. The failure of Rep. Curbelo’s carbon tax proposal gambit and the decimation of the CSC should be a lesson to Republican elected officials: backing more taxes and regulation is not going to help reelection prospects. Ultimately what the CSC stands for is raising energy prices for consumers—something that will not win favor with Republican supporters.

Washington state carbon tax fails again

The third time was not the charm in Washington State, as voters again rejected an attempt to impose a carbon tax. In 2016, voters rejected what was billed as a “revenue-neutral” carbon tax. Further, during the last session of the legislature, legislation to create a carbon tax foundered as legislators faced the true costs such an idea would impose on the state’s economy. This election season, the environmental left proposed a carbon tax of its own, promising to redistribute the revenue to various pet causes.

In 2016, large parts of the environmental left came out against the “revenue-neutral” carbon tax ballot initiative mainly because it failed to spend the new revenues on growing government. This exposed the game that some carbon tax proponents play, pretending that a carbon tax is about helping the environment when it’s really about imposing new taxes. With the 2018 initiative, proponents at least get points for honesty, transparently seeking to use the potential $1 billion a year to spend on new government programs. But voters once again showed their disapproval, defeating the initiative by a wide margin.

Colorado voters are wise to the game

In Colorado, voters decidedly rejected a ballot proposition that would have increased setback distances for new oil and gas wells (setbacks are regulations requiring wells to be a certain distance from a given class of buildings, which vary by state: residences, schools, water sources, etc.). The proposition was designed to sound innocuous by claiming to add protections for health and safety, but the effect of the setbacks would have been anything but innocuous. State energy regulators estimated that more than 85% of all non-federal acreage in the state would have been made off limits by the expanded setback requirements. This near-ban on oil and gas development was not accidental. The whole point of the proposition was to ban hydraulic fracturing in the state after other efforts failed. Thankfully, voters saw through the ruse, rejecting the proposition by a lopsided 14-point margin.

A second question on the ballot, to compensate landowners for losses from legal and regulatory actions, also failed. That question was primarily placed on the ballot in reaction to the potential damage from the setback proposition. Its failure is rendered far less significant given the rejection of the setback proposition.

Nevada votes for higher electricity bills

Voters in Nevada simultaneously rejected a ballot question that would have required an end to the state’s monopoly electricity system while approving a question to mandate 50% electricity generation from renewables by 2030.

Question 3 proposed to require the legislature to pass a law to open up the state electricity market to competition. The Nevada electricity market is a state enforced monopoly in that consumers have no choice in their electricity provider. The lack of competition and captive consumer base means that the utilities are insulated from any market signals. Common effects of such a system include regulatory capture, where the regulators and utilities collude against ratepayers, and what is known as gold-plating, where a utility builds expensive, often unneeded, new facilities or infrastructure, knowing they can raise rates to pay for it.

Ballot Question 6 purports to require that electricity generation in Nevada be derived from 50% renewable energy by 2030. The question takes no account of how much this would cost taxpayers and ratepayers. Nevada is already about halfway to that 50% threshold (mainly thanks to geothermal generation), so they are better placed than, for example Arizona, to reach it. However transitioning to 50% renewables is going to raise costs for ratepayers since some sort of backup capacity will have to exist for when the wind is not blowing and the sun is not shining. That backup may come from natural gas or coal plants sitting idle until needed (while costing money to maintain) or it may come from constructing expensive battery capacity. Wherever it comes from, it will cost a significant sum of money, and that is on top of the costs of installing and maintaining vast acres of new wind and solar capacity. Fortunately, Question 6’s victory is not the final story. Nevada law requires constitutional amendments to be passed by voters in two consecutive elections. In order for the renewable mandates to go into effect, Question 6 will need to win as a ballot proposal again in 2020.

Gubernatorial seats and state legislatures hold in some states, fall in others

Democrats made substantial gains in gubernatorial races where they flipped control of Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, Nevada, New Mexico, and Wisconsin. This is not surprising as Republican control of many of those offices was the result of historic performances by the GOP in previous elections. Republicans maintained control over the governor’s office and the state legislature in the key battleground states of Florida, Iowa, and Ohio. This is encouraging as going into election night, the governor’s office was considered to be in play in all three of these states.

Two states that are worth a deeper discussion are California and Colorado as they have been battlegrounds for energy issues in recent years. The situation in California appears to have worsened as the newly elected Governor Gavin Newsom’s approach to energy issues will make Jerry Brown’s policies appear moderate in comparison. Newsom has promised to accelerate “decarbonization” in California and has promised to put the state on a path to 100 percent renewable energy. He has also promised to achieve zero diesel emissions by 2030, ensuring that residents of California should expect higher energy prices in the foreseeable future. The election of Newsom as well as voters rejecting a measure to undo recent increases to state gas taxes and vehicle registration fees is emblematic of the broader gap between California and the rest of the country when it comes to energy policy.

We should celebrate the defeat of Proposition 112 in Colorado, but the broader political trends in the state are concerning. The election of Rep. Jared Polis to the governor’s office is a setback for the state as he has characterized America’s use of affordable energy as an “addiction” to fossil fuels. Democrats also won control over the state Senate, giving them complete control over the state’s governor’s office and legislature. This shift means we have not seen the end of the Keep it in the Ground movement in Colorado, and proponents of free market energy policies should be prepared to battle proposals like 112 in the state legislature.

Conclusion

This election can perhaps best be understood as a reversion to the mean. The average loss for a president’s party in the first midterms since World War II has been about 30 seats in the House. The Republicans will probably lose a bit more than that but nowhere near the washouts of 1994 (52 seats during the Clinton Administration) or 2010 (63 seats during the Obama Administration).

As for ballot measures, the 2018 midterms were mostly positive for our cause of affordable, abundant energy through freer markets. The continued disdain from voters in a variety of states for the more foolish energy policy ideas shows that there is still a strong bedrock of common sense that a free market energy policy has to build on. The opportunity to consolidate and improve upon the policy gains of the last two years, thanks to a pro-energy Trump Administration, is still very much alive.

While the flip of the House of Representatives is indeed a concern and will mean a larger threat of interventionist policies that hurt consumers, the midterm elections proved that when put to a vote, voters reject policies that threaten the affordability and reliability of the energy they depend upon. The American Energy Alliance will continue its fight for affordable, abundant, and reliable energy for American consumers and businesses no matter which way the political winds blow.

Full PDF. 

Voters Know Best

WASHINGTON – As the dust settles from the 2018 midterm election, several states have determined the effects of energy-related ballot measures impacting the affordability of energy and consumer choice. American Energy Alliance President Thomas J Pyle made the following statement on the results of some of these energy ballot initiatives:

“What we learned from this election, in states like Colorado, Arizona, and Washington, is that voters reject policies that would make energy more expensive and less reliable to them, their families, and the larger economy. There is little doubt that those who authored the defeated initiatives will try again, but we hope they have finally learned their lesson.The voters have spoken. It’s time to listen to them and focus on policies that expand the availability, affordability, and reliability of energy, rather than on policies that makes energy more scarce, more expensive, and less reliable.”

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For media inquiries, please contact Erin Amsberry
[email protected]

Fringe Activists vs. Colorado Energy

First published by the Pueblo Chieftain

Next month, Colorado voters will decide whether to stymie a thriving industry for ideological purposes.

If passed, Proposition 112 would greatly expand the existing no-drilling zones surrounding occupied buildings. That would effectively prohibit Colorado oil and gas firms, which support 230,000 local jobs and add $31 billion annually to the state economy, from drilling new wells.

Grounded in science and countless studies, Colorado already has strict, common sense boundaries to protect public health and the environment: 500 feet for homes and 1,000 feet for high-occupancy buildings, such as offices and schools. Prop 112 unnecessarily ratchets up the existing setbacks to 2,500 feet — nearly half a mile — creating a patchwork of prohibited zones that would render 85 percent of all non-federal land off limits to energy extraction, according to the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission.

The consequences would be dire. Once existing wells deplete, the state will have to import oil and gas at greater cost from other states, even requiring new long-distance pipelines. At risk are 140,000 direct Colorado jobs and $7 billion in Colorado’s gross domestic product in the first five years of the de facto ban.

The state’s budget would certainly suffer. Oil and gas companies are a crucial source of public revenue, paying over $1 billion a year in state taxes. Most of that revenue is earmarked specifically for vital public services.

Consider the Colorado Land Board, a state agency responsible for 4 million acres of energy assets. This board generates hundreds of millions of dollars every year through user fees and taxes. And 95 percent of its revenues go to public education. If energy companies can’t drill, that income will fade away. Schools would be forced to find new funding — ironic, given another ballot measure to raise taxes for education.

It’s no wonder, then, that educators staunchly oppose Prop 112. Bob Schaffer, the headmaster of Liberty Common School in Fort Collins, has condemned it as “irresponsible” and “dangerous.”

Green activists claim Prop 112 is an environmental imperative. “We are protecting homes, schools, playgrounds, and water sources,” boasted Anne Lee Foster, a chief organizer of Colorado Rising, the group that led the signature collection drive to put Prop 112 on the ballot.

Foster and allies have focused their ire on “fracking,” an innovative drilling technique. When companies frack a well, they pump water, sand and a small amount of lubricants into underground rock formations at high pressure. This mix creates fissures in the rock, allowing companies to extract the embedded oil and gas. Activists claim the expanded buffer zones will prevent fracking from polluting local waterways with dangerous chemicals.

Yet fracking has been examined thoroughly and found safe. Twenty-six separate studies, including one from Colorado State University, have concluded that fracking does not contaminate groundwater. There is no scientific evidence that increasing the setback distance would improve health or protect anyone from anything — it is a political ploy designed to stymie an essential industry.

The de facto drilling ban contained in Prop 112 is the latest battle in the keep-it-in-the-ground war against fossil fuels. New York state outright banned fracking; Colorado’s proposition is the back-door version of the same thing. That’s why the Washington D.C.-based lobbying group Food and Water Watch gifted $160,000 to Colorado Rising’s issues committee.

Colorado policies should be up to Coloradans, not special interest groups in Washington. And it is a colossal waste that the petroleum industry has had to pony up significant monies for an unnecessary political fight, funds that could have gone to employees or shareholders, not to mention to new drilling efforts to reduce energy costs for consumers.

Historically, Coloradans has proven they can successfully balance environmental and economic concerns. Regulators have set smart rules that protect precious national resources and ensure public health. Colorado was the first state in the country to require water sampling around drilling sites and the first to require methane capture. At the same time, energy developers have always been afforded the flexibility needed to grow and generate wealth.

Prop 112 threatens this balance. Let’s hope voters see through the ruse come Nov. 6.

Denver CBS 4 explains Colorado’s Proposition 112

With a little more than a week to the midterm elections, the American Energy Alliance would like to take one more opportunity to remind our audience about an important ballot initiative in the state of Colorado: Proposition 112. If passed, 112 would require a 2,500-foot barrier between new oil and gas drilling projects and any occupied structure or loosely defined “vulnerable area” in the state of Colorado.

Recently, Denver CBS 4’s Shaun Boyd discussed the topic on her popular political fact-checking segment “Reality Check.” The American Energy Alliance encourages voters in the state of Colorado to view the segment here, as it offers a brief, yet thorough, explanation of the economic harm Proposition 112 would cause the state of Colorado if it were to pass on Election Day.

A recent poll from the University of Colorado’s American Political Research Lab shows that voters are evenly split in their support for Proposition 112. For this reason, we want to highlight an important part of the CBS 4 segment; mainly that it draws attention to the wide-ranging bipartisan opposition to Proposition 112, which can be attributed to the severe economic harm it would cause to the state of Colorado.

The segment walks us through claims being made in a television ad featuring prominent opponents of the ballot initiative. In the ad, Democrat Ken Salazar, the former U.S. Senator of Colorado and the former Secretary of the Interior to the Obama Administration points out that Proposition 112 is “effectively a ban on oil and natural gas in Colorado.” It then cuts to the former Republican Governor of Colorado Bill Owens where he explains, “112 will cost thousands of good jobs across our state.” CBS 4’s Boyd calls each of these claims “alarming and true.”

Boyd also points out that other opponents of the proposition include environmentalists like former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter who called the proposal a “keep-it-in-the-ground effort,” that was “arrived at in a very non-Colorado way… without dialogue or debate, by a group of advocates.”

The segment then goes on to expose other important factors of this initiative, including this report from the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission, which explained that 112 would ban fracking on at least 85 percent of non-federal land in Colorado. Colorado Rising, the group responsible for bringing 112 to the ballot, has disputed this claim. But as the segment explains, the supporters of 112 are relying on a single academic paper from an assistant professor at the Colorado School of Mines, which Boyd explains, “included big caveats and has since been debunked by his colleagues.”

For a more detailed analysis on Proposition 112, we also encourage readers to listen to a recent episode of our partner organization’s podcast where IER’s staff discussed the proposition with Kelly Sloan of the Centennial Institute at Colorado Christian University to discuss the initiative.