Federal Agency Involvement in Western Renewable Energy Resource Decisions: Assessing the Views of Colorado County Commissioners

16 Pages Posted: 31 Mar 2010  

Charles Davis

Colorado State University, Fort Collins

Date Written: March 31, 2010

Abstract

This research addresses a key aspect of federal-local relationships in American federalism. How do Colorado county commissioners react in terms of supporting or restricting the development of renewable energy resource decisions under the control of federal agencies? Do they support the removal of legal obstacles to the construction of renewable energy facilities on federal lands under the jurisdiction of the U.S. Forest Service or the Bureau of Land Management (BLM)? And to what extent to they favor the prospective use of eminent domain authority by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to site interstate transmission lines across county boundaries? The results presented here suggest that commissioners are less likely to support the exercise of eminent domain authority if they are favorably predisposed toward clean coal or nuclear power and prefer a more gradual transition to the use of renewable energy resources. Commissioner resistance to the development of renewable energy facilities on federal lands was more likely to occur in counties with a greater percentage of BLM or Forest Service lands and with higher PILT payments from natural resource uses.

Suggested Citation

Davis, Charles, Federal Agency Involvement in Western Renewable Energy Resource Decisions: Assessing the Views of Colorado County Commissioners (March 31, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1582521 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1582521

Charles Davis (Contact Author)

Colorado State University, Fort Collins ( email )

Fort Collins, CO 80523-1771
United States

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