Western Conservation - Energy

Reduce fossil fuel development and increase energy efficiency and renewable energy sources

Calls for U.S. energy independence are already resulting in renewed efforts by oil and gas companies to develop domestic fossil fuel resources. Western lands will continue to account for a significant amount of oil and gas production in the U.S. and Canada, with these extractive industries taking a harsh toll on land, water, and habitat resources. Renewable energy technologies provide hope for a cleaner, more sustainable alternative; but these new facilities and transmission lines must be developed in a way that protects important habitat and scenic areas. Energy efficiency (in buildings and distribution systems) can play an important role in reducing energy consumption. Our goal is to reduce fossil fuel development, increase energy efficiency, and promote renewable energy development. The Foundation will support organizations working to accomplish the following objectives.

  • Improve state and federal oil and gas development regulations
  • Prevent commercial oil shale development
  • Reduce demand and restrict infrastructure for high carbon fuels (tar sands, oil shale, coal)
  • Ensure state and national climate and energy policy restricts high carbon fuels
  • Establish a 25% renewable energy requirement in 11 western states
  • Increase renewable project and transmission line approvals and ensure they meet criteria that protect land, habitat, and water resources
  • Achieve electric grid integration and reliability necessary to support 50% renewable generation 
  • Establish Western state energy efficiency standards requiring 20% reduction in net electricity demand
  • Align western utility economic incentives with increased energy efficiency investment

More on Western Conservation:

The Environment Program is accepting Letters of Inquiry for its Western Conservation grants. Learn more by visiting the Grantseekers page.