A Bird in the Hand

The greater sage-grouse, a wild bird that lives across the Western United States, has become one of the most controversial species in American history. Over the past few decades, a political movement has worked to place the greater sage-grouse under the protection of the Endangered Species Act [...]

The Footprint of Energy

Modern society requires a tremendous amount of electricity to function, and one of this generation’s greatest challenges is generating and distributing energy efficiently. Electricity generation is energy intensive, and each source leaves its own environmental and ecological footprint. Although [...]


Electricity generated from hydropower has been the largest component of the United States' renewable energy portfolio for over a century. Small and efficient hydropower installations have the potential to provide added amounts of clean and reliable renewable energy without substantial [...]

Water In Utah

Utah is one of the driest states in the country, yet it has one of the highest rates of water consumption. The Institute of Political Economy (IPE) at Utah State University examined the institutional, economic, and political barriers that prevent water from flowing to its most highly valued use [...]

Manufacturing Yellowstone

As the National Park Service (NPS) celebrates its centennial anniversary in 2016, the Institute of Political Economy (IPE) at the Utah State University examined how NPS officials have made management decisions in Yellowstone National Park over the past century. In the report Manufacturing [...]

It’s Getting Better

Contrary to popular belief, environmental quality in the United States has been improving and continues to improve. Water quality is better than it has been in the last 100 years. The six pollutants that adversely affect outdoor air quality are down significantly. Indoor air quality is much [...]

Unseen Costs of Energy

The Institute of Political Economy at Utah State University released four studies that highlight the unseen costs of producing coal, natural gas, wind, and solar-generated electricity. The overall findings of the studies suggest American consumers are often paying considerably more for their [...]

Unseen Costs of Solar Energy

In recent years, US solar power capacity has grown rapidly. Government subsidies and mandates, not market forces, are encouraging the development of solar power. Policymakers at both the federal and state level have enacted incentives for solar power to address constituents' desire to [...]

Unseen Costs of Coal Energy

Coal-generated electricity has both explicit and implicit costs. The explicit, or seen, costs of coal-fired electricity include the costs of power plant development and construction, operation & maintenance, and constructing and maintaining transmission infrastructure. Often overlooked, [...]

Unseen Costs Of Wind Energy

This research explores both explicit and implicit factors that influence the cost of producing electricity from different sources. The explicit, or seen, costs of electricity include the costs of power plant development and construction, operation & maintenance, and transmission [...]

Carbon Tax

In politics there are often pressures to “do something” about a perceived problem even if we do not know what is the correct something, what is the correct amount of something, or even if doing something is the correct thing to do?. A carbon tax may be an example—we do not know if it is the [...]

Green vs. Green

Renewable and carbon-neutral energy have been promoted as the future of energy production in the United States. Non-traditional energy sources show promise as alternatives to fossil fuels and may provide a sustainable source of energy in increasingly uncertain energy markets. However, these new [...]

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