Monday, March 21, 2011

The Rocky Mountain Energy Blog: Readily Accessible Expertise and Insight About Energy Issues in the Rocky Mountain Region

Anyone interested in following energy developments and challenges in the Rocky Mountain region -- particularly Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming -- should be sure to bookmark (or subscribe to) the Rocky Mountain Energy Blog, which identifies and tracks major developments and trends in the region.

Yesterday I had lunch with Kelly de la Torre, one of the blog's co-authors and an attorney at Beatty & Wozniak in Denver. The firm, which goes by the moniker "Energy in the Law," focuses on energy and natural resources law. As a result, the blog, which is co-authored by Jamie Jost, who also practices at Beatty & Wozniak, is filled with information and observations that will be extremely useful to anyone practicing or thinking about practicing in this area, or (and possibly more importantly) for businesses that are part of the energy or natural resources sector in the Rocky Mountains.

Perhaps what makes this blog so useful is the experience and insight that Ms. de la Torre and Ms. Jost bring to the project. The former practices mostly in the renewable energy sector, and is an expert on transmission issues. The latter focuses on oil and gas, thus bringing perspective to a different segment of the energy sector. Working together, Ms. de la Torre and Ms. Jost cover a great deal of ground writing about issues that are at the forefront of development in the Rocky Mountain West.

A few recent postings illustrate my point. In late February, the blog included a posting about the New Mexico Electricity Transmission Planning Report. In early February the blog reported about "a new report that emphasizes the need to include natural gas in policy and infrastructure planning discussions between industry, regulators, and policy makers."

Ms. de la Torre explained that she represents clients before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission and the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission. She also regularly interacts with state infrastructure authorities in the Rocky Mountain Region. In brief, she has studied the regulatory and legislative issues involving the often vexing issues related to electricity transmission and thus when she speaks or writes about these issues it makes sense to pay close attention.

You only have to look at what Ms. de la Torre is doing, and her passion for understanding and resolving tough transmission-related issues, to have a better understanding about why many consider Denver and Colorado the center of the "new energy economy."

Don C. Smith
Environmental and Natural Resources Law & Policy Program

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