Texas Public Policy Foundation

Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF)


The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) is a conservative think tank based in Austin, Texas, founded by James R. Leininger in 1989. [1]

According to their website, “The Foundation’s mission is to promote and defend liberty, personal responsibility, and free enterprise in Texas and the nation by educating and affecting policymakers and the Texas public policy debate with academically sound research and outreach.” [2]

The TPPF organizes its website into “Centers” based around issue areas including the following: [3]

  • Center for the American Future
  • Economic Freedom
  • Education Freedom
  • Effective Justice
  • Energy & Environment
  • Fiscal Policy
  • Health Care
  • Higher Education 
  • Local Governance
  • Tenth Amendment

Critics have said that the Texas Public Policy Foundation takes financial contributions from a small subgroup of corporations, and this may influence TPPF‘s research and advocacy. For example, Craig McDonald, director of Texans for Public Justice, told the Texas Observer, “TPPF‘s donors are a Who’s Who of Texas polluters, giant utilities and big insurance companies. TPPF is thinking the way its donors want it to think.” [4]

While TPPF claims that it is a non-partisan research institute, and as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit it isn’t legally required to reveal its donors, a 2010 list of funders surfaced that revealed significant contributions from Koch Industries, Koch family Foundations, the Tobacco Industry, ExxonMobil, and many others. [4]

Life:Powered Campaign

In 2018, TPPF launched Life:Powered, a project run by Bernard McNamee, who formerly worked as deputy general counsel for energy policy under Secretary Rick Perry at the Department of Energy (DOE). According to its 2017 annual report, Life:Powered was originally TPPF’s “Fueling Freedom” project, which launched in 2015 “to combat the Obama-era Clean Power Plan.” [52], [53], [54]

TPPF‘s Kathleen Hartnett-White, a senior fellow of the Life:Powered project, was also a former director of the Fueling Freedom project and co-authored the same-titled book with Heritage Foundation economist Stephen Moore. [55]

Speaking to the American-Statesman, senior manager Jason Isaac said that the mission of Life:Powered was to “raise America’s energy IQ,” adding: [60]

We’re making the connection between prosperity we enjoy here in the United States and access to energy in all forms, all abundant, affordable reliable, all forms and all of the above.” [60]

A 2018 TPPF video promoting the continued operation of a coal-fired power plant on the Arizona Navajo reservation has been rebranded with the Life:Powered name. The video showed images of smokestacks with a voiceover by a young Navajo girl saying, “Papa says it’s the heart of the land. I can hear it beating.” [60] 

The video’s closing text reads:

Extreme environmentalist politics will eliminate jobs, destroy families, and spike electric bills in the Navajo Nation and across America. The Navajo don’t need to be told what to do. They’ve been protecting the environment for centuries.” [60]

Local environmental groups responded with claims that the plant’s consumption of billions of gallons of groundwater has led to contamination and depletion of the reservation’s water supply. The executive director of a Navajo non-profit organization told the Statesman[60]

The pro-coal supporters have made it all about jobs. There’s more to it than that. What’s happening on Black Mesa shows that jobs and revenues is not all that it’s made out to be. When you lose your own potable water source, that’s life or death right there.” [60]

Peabody Energy, a TPPF donor, operates the Navajo Generating Station, which will be shuttered at the end of 2019. [60]

Another TPPF Life:Powered-branded video on the topic of “Energy Poverty” featured Caleb Rossiter of the CO2 Foundation promoting wider adoption of fossil fuel-generated electricity in the developing world. [60] 

Life:Powered plans to target future messaging in New Mexico, the Pacific Northwest, the Midwest, and Alaska in opposition to renewable energy and carbon reduction initiatives. [60]

Stance on Climate Change

November 2015

Bud Brigham, a “longtime energy-sector entrepreneur” is Senior Advisor to the Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment for the Texas Public Policy Foundation. He wrote about what he describes as “six indisputable facts about the Earth’s history” in Townhall, which were republished by TPPF: [5]

  1. The climate always has and will continue to change. It’s been a lot hotter in the past, in fact we’ve had warming and cooling spells roughly every 1500 years, and today’s temperatures are easily within historical ranges.
  2. Species do better in warmer climates, they struggle more in cooler periods.
  3. Sea level has fluctuated dramatically over the Earth’s history. Central Texas has flooded many times throughout earth’s history.
  4. CO2 levels also historically fluctuate, they’ve been much higher than they are today, and 100 years from now CO2 levels will still be lower than prior periods.
  5. CO2 is not pollution, it’s necessary for survival. It greens the earth. Green is good, and species have prospered with much higher CO2 levels than today.
  6. And last, the most recent warming spell, which I’m personally very grateful for, began well before the industrial revolution. So it obviously was not initiated by the burning of fossil fuels. Based on the last 18 years of satellite readings, Earth’s temperatures have flattened, despite the fact that CO2 levels continued to rise.”

January 2009

“No link between man-made CO2 emissions and accelerated warming has been demonstrated with observational evidence.” [6]


According to their website, TPPF is “Funded by thousands of individuals, foundations, and corporations, the Foundation does not accept government funds or contributions to influence the outcomes of its research.” [2]

The following funding information is based on data the Conservative Transparency Project has compiled from publicly-available 990 tax forms. Note that not all individual funding values have been verified by DeSmog.

View the attached spreadsheet for more details on the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s funding by year (.xlsx). [7]

Pew Charitable Trusts$5,488,454
Charles G. Koch Charitable Foundation$3,555,624
Donors Capital Fund$3,530,848
Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation$980,000
Searle Freedom Trust$645,000
Claude R. Lambe Charitable Foundation$549,000
Jaquelin Hume Foundation$490,001
State Policy Network$378,900
The Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation$315,000
The Roe Foundation$287,000
The Gordon and Mary Cain Foundation$275,000
Adolph Coors Foundation$180,000
Armstrong Foundation$160,000
Schwab Charitable Fund$125,816
Castle Rock Foundation$125,000
William H. Donner Foundation$110,000
JM Foundation$105,000
Exxon Mobil$100,000
Heartland Institute$100,000
Cato Institute$100,000
Dodge Jones Foundation$77,500
Ruth & Lovett Peters Foundation$76,125
Friedman Foundation For Educational Choice$62,000
Charles Koch Institute$53,798
The Robertson-Finley Foundation$42,500
National Christian Charitable Foundation$27,500
Americans for Tax Reform Foundation$25,000
Walton Family Foundation$25,000
Kickapoo Springs Foundation$15,000
The Vernon K. Krieble Foundation$11,000
Atlas Economic Research Foundation$9,500
National Philanthropic Trust$5,000
Grand Total$19,826,182

Koch Funding

According to 990 forms, TPPF has received at least $3,618,747 from Koch-related foundations since 1998. Greenpeace also tracks TPPF‘s Koch funding[36]

YearCharles G. Koch Charitable FoundationClaude R. Lambe Charitable FoundationCharles Koch InstituteGrand Total
1998 $22,500 $22,500
1999 $22,000 $22,000
2004$16,374$50,000 $66,374
2005$35,642$10,000 $45,642
2006$22,983$70,000 $92,983
2007 $70,000 $70,000
2008 $74,500 $74,500
2009 $100,000 $100,000
2010 $50,000 $50,000
2011$30,000  $30,000
2012 $80,000 $80,000
2013$45,000  $45,000
2014$200,000 $12,500$212,500
2016$612,250 $15,000$627,250
2015$175,375 $20,123$195,498
2017$1,885,000  $1,885,000
2018$533,000 $6,175$539,175
Grand Total$3,555,624$549,000$53,798$4,158,422

Other Funders

The Texas Observer reports that tax documents show the TPPF also receives funding from Big Tobacco, and others inside the Koch Funding network. Top donors included in the 2010 990 forms included (See complete pdf here, or view the attached .xlsx spreadsheet for details): [37]

The documents were also mentioned in a 2016 investigation by Greenpeace UK‘s Unearthed which highlighted Centrica energy’s tens of thousands of dollars in donations to the TPPF through its subsidiary Direct Energy. When contacted by Unearthed, Centrica refused to disclosed the total sum it had donated to TPPF, but said that it has no plans to stop. [44]

DonorTotal (2010)
Individual Donors$534,649
Pew Charitable Trusts$354,420
State Think Tank Fund$300,000
The Chicago Community Found$203,760
ED Foundation$200,495
Government Transparency Fund$195,000
Public Welfare Foundation$175,000
Koch Industries, Inc$159,834
Fickling Family Foundation$100,000
Searle Freedom Trust$95,000
Hornfischer Literary Management$94,000
Permian Basin Acquisition Fund$80,325
Claude R. Lambe Charitable Fm$69,789
Kinetic Concepts Inc$50,000
State Policy Network$49,307
Discovery Operating Inc$48,500
Crownquest Oil & Gas, LLC$43,000
Associated Electric Companies$43,000
Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation$40,000
Jaquelin Hume Foundation$40,000
Texans for Lawsuit Reform$30,000
Outreach HeaIth Services$30,000
San Antonio Steel Co$25,000
TXU Energy$25,000
State Farm Insurance Co$25,000
Judson & Associates$25,000
CenterPoint Energy$25,000
Roe Foundation$25,000
Dodge Jones Foundation$22,500
Amon G Carter Foundation$20,000
Altria Client Services, Inc$20,000
Direct Energy (subsidiary of UK-based Centrica)$20,000
GEO Group$15,000
Texas Western Energy Corp$15,000
Phil Adams Company$15,000
AIM Investments$12,500
Verizon – National$12,500
Jones Energy$12,000
Contran Corporation$11,000
Robertson-Finley Foundation$10,879
Time Warner Cable$10,000
Union Pacific$10,000
AEP Texas$10,000
Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company$10,000
The Armstrong Foundation$10,000
Fairhill School$10,000
NRG Energy$10,000
American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity$10,000
Albert & Ethel Herzstem Chant$10,000
Palmetto Partners, Ltd$10,000
VF-Russia Inc$10,000
Lilly USA, LLC$10,000
Earlane and Sam Croom Foundation$10,000
Youth Engagement Mobilization$9,000
Noble Strategic Services$6,500
Arroyo Grande Ranch Compan$6,000
Petroleum Strategies, Inc$6,000
Devon Energy$5,000
Henry Petroleum LP$5,000
Mercy International Inc$5,000
Austin CEO Foundation$5,000
AAA Capital Management, Inc$5,000
RJ Reynolds Tobacco Co$5,000
Coca-Cola Refreshments USA$5,000
Kinley Corporation$5,000
Farmers Insurance Group$5,000
Public Consulting Group$5,000
Harden Healthcare, LLC$5,000
Boeing Company$5,000
Allen Boone Humphries Robins,$5,000
American Medical Response dba Access2Care$5,000
Hunt Family Foundation$5,000
Amerisure Mutual Insurance Cc$5,000
J. Mark and Associates$5,000
Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas$5,000
Mccombs Enterprises$5,000
Pinnacle Anesthesia Consultant$5,000
Texas Association of Manufacturers$5,000
Texas Instruments$5,000
Grand Total$3,905,657

990 Forms

Key People

Board of Directors

Bill JonesYYYYY       
Brenda PejovichYYYYYYYYYYY 
Brooke L. RollinsYYYYYYYYYY President and CEO
Cody Campbell          Y 
Craig James      YY    
Dale LaineYYYYY       
Doug Deason          Y 
Ernest AngeloYYYYYYYYYYYTreasurer 
Fritz SteigerYYYYY       
George Seay      YYY   
George W. Strake Jr.  YYYYYYYYY 
James LeiningerYYYYYYYYYYYChairman Emeritus 
John Nau, III Y          
Kendall Miller       YY   
Kevin Sparks         YY 
Kyle Stallings        YYY 
L.C. “Chaz” Neely         YY 
Linda Mays McCaul         Y  
Michael StevensYYYYY       
Ramiro GalindoYYYYY       
Rick Fletcher         YY 
Ryan Haggerty          Y 
Stacy Hock         YY 
Thomas “Tim” LylesYYYYYYYYYYYChairman 
Tim DunnYYYYYYYYYYYVice Chairman
Vance C. MillerYYYYYYYY    
Victor Leal       YYY  
Wendy Lee GrammYYYYYY YYY Chairman
Will JarrettYY          
William A. “Bill” McMinnYYYYYYY     
Windi Grimes         YY 


Aaron Barnes          YAttorney
Aaron GibsonY          Spring Research Associate
Adam Luck         Y Right on Crime State Director, Oklahoma
Alex Billups          YMarketing & Multimedia Associate
Alice Marie Johnson          YSenior Fellow, Right on Crime
Alicia Pierce          YCommunications Director and Senior Campaign Director, Remember the Taxpayer
Allegra Hill         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Local Governance
Andrea Antal      Y    Development Events Manager
Andrea Whitman     Y     Program Coordinator
Andrew Afifian          YPolicy Analyst, Right on Crime
Andrew C. Brown          YDirector, Center for Families and Children
Andrew Gillen          YSenior Policy Analyst, Center for Innovation in Education
Andrew Martin       Y   Special Programs Manager
Andrew Speno          YOklahoma State Director, Right on Crime
Angie Choueifati    Y       
Annie Casteel         Y Director of Major Gifts
Annie Elliott          YDirector of Donor Communications
Arlene Wohlgemuth   Y  YYYY Executive Director (ties to ALEC)
Austin Lyttle          YExecutive Assistant
Beau Tyler    Y       
Bill Peacock YYYYYYYYY Vice President of Research; Director, Center for Economic Freedom
Brent Bennett          YPolicy Analyst, Life: Powered
Brian Phillips          YChief Communications Officer
Brooke Dollens Terry   YYYY    Senior Education Policy Analyst
Brooke L. RollinsYYYYYYYYYY President and CEO
Buckley Morlot          YDevelopment Officer
Byron SchlomachYYYY        
Cara Dublin         Y Grants & Donor Communications Manager
Carine Martinez          YSenior Managing Editor & Policy Analyst
Caroline Espinosa         YYDeputy Director of Right on Crime
Chance Weldon         YYAttorney
Charissa Huntzinger          YPolicy Analyst, Center for Families and Children
Chelsea Murphy          YFlorida State Director, Right on Crime
Chris PattersonYYY         
Christy Anderson          YPublications Manager
Chuck DeVore         YYVice President of National Initiatives
Cindy Floyd       YY  Donor Relations Manager
CJ Bankhead         Y Digital Campaigns & Analytics Manager
Clint Nesmith         YYVice President of Engagement
Crystal Bonham          YDigital Director
Currie Myers          YSenior Visiting Fellow
Dan Isett         Y Communications Director, Right on Crime
David Balat          YDirector, Right on Healthcare
David Guenthner   YYYYYYY Senior Director for Public Affairs
Derek M. Cohen         YYDirector, Center for Effective Justice and Right on Crime
Dianna Muldrow         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice and Right on Crime
Donna Peterson  Y         
Doug Domenech         Y Director, Fueling Freedom Project
Drew Thornley    Y       
Elizabeth Lincicome         Y Energy-And-Environment Media-Relations Manager
Elizabeth Moore          YDevelopment Officer
Elizabeth O’Connor          YLegislative Fellow
Elizabeth Young     Y     Higher Education Policy Analyst
Ellen Troxclair          YSenior Fellow, Think Local Liberty
Emily Sass          YPolicy Director, Center for Innovation in Education
Emma Rogers          YDevelopment Assistant
Erin Davis Valdez          YPolicy Analyst, Center for Innovation in Education and Right on Work
Fernando Ardila         Y Development Programs Administrator
Francisco “Quico” Canseco          YDirector, Election Integrity Project
George Hernandez Y          
Gina Van Dyke         Y Operations Coordinator
Grace Watson          YLegislative Fellows
Graeme Taylor          YOperations Manager
Greg Glod         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice & Right on Crime
Greg Sindelar    YYYYYYYChief Operating Officer
Heather Williams       Y   Higher Education Policy Analyst
Iveta Stefancova          YPolicy Analyst, Right on Crime
J.B. Horton          YChief Development Officer
Jacki Deason          YSenior Fellow, Life: Powered
Jaimie Ailshire         Y Office Manager
James Golsan       YY  Policy Analyst, Center for Education Policy
James Quintero    YYYYYYYDirector, Think Local Liberty
Jamie Story  YYY       
Jason Isaac          YSenior Manager and Distinguished Fellow, Life: Powered
Jeanette Moll        Y  Juvenile Justice Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice
Jeramy Kitchen          YDirector, Legislative Affairs
Jody Gibson         Y Publications & Marketing Manager
Joe Luppino-Esposito         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice & Right on Crime
Joel Stonedale         Y Attorney, Center for the American Future
John Davidson         Y Director, Center for Health Care Policy
John Koufos          YNational Director of Reentry Initiatives, Right on Crime and Executive Director, Safe Streets & Second Chances
John N. Hostettler          YVice President of Federal Affairs, States Trust
Jordan Brownwood       YY  Communications Manager, Texas Budget Source
Joshua Trevino       Y  YChief Innovation Officer
Joshua Treviño        YY Vice President of Strategy
Josiah Neeley        Y  Policy Analyst, Center for Tenth Amendment Studies & Center for Energy & the Environment
Julie Warren          YDirector of State Initiatives and Tennessee and Kentucky State Director, Right on Crime
Justin Keener     YY    Vice President of Policy and Communications
Kalese Hammonds    Y       
Kate DonerY          Director of Finance
Kate E. Murphy         Y Mental Health Policy Fellow
Katherine Donovan          YDevelopment Associate
Kathleen Hartnett White    YYYYYYYDirector, Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment & Senior Fellow, Life: Powered
Kathleen Hunker         Y Senior Policy Analyst, Center for Economic Freedom and Managing Editor
Kathleen O’Hearn Y          
Katie Tahuahua          YCommunications Manager, Life:Powered
Ken Oliver          YSenior Director of Engagement and Right on Immigration
Kent Grusendorf         Y Senior Fellow & Director, Center for Education Freedom
Kevin Roberts          YExecutive Director
Kristen Baerveldt          YEvents Manager
Kristen Indriago       YY  Deputy Communications Director
Kurt Altman          YArizona and New Mexico State Director, Right on Crime
Lacey White          YProject Manager, Right on Crime
Law Armstrong   Y        
Leigh Thompson         Y Policy Analyst, Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment
Louis Stone          YChief Financial Officer
Marc Levin  YYYYYYYYYChief of Policy and Innovation, Right on Crime
Mario Loyola       YYY On temporary leave
Mary Katherine McNabb          YDevelopment Administrator, Right on Crime
Mary Katherine Stout YYYY       
Megan Wilson  Y         
Michael Barba         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Education Freedom
Michael Haugen         YYPolicy Analyst, Right on Crime
Michael Joyce    YYYYY  Director of Events
Michael Leland          YCampaign Director, Election Integrity Project
Michael SullivanYYY         
Michelle Jehring          YDevelopment Research Manager
Munera Al-Fuhaid          YAttorney
Nancy Druart  YYYYYYY  Publications Manager
Nate Thompson YY         
Nick Haydon          YGrants Manager
Nicole Pressley          YPolicy Analyst
Nina Sidoryanskaya       YY  Capital Campaign Manager
Olivia Gustin         Y Events Manager
Olivia White          YLiberty Leadership Council Manger
Rafael Bejar          YDirector of Outreach
Randy Petersen          YSenior Researcher
Richard A. Johnson III          YDirector, Booker T. Washington Initiative
Rikki Risinger       YYY Controller
Robert Henneke         YYGeneral Counsel & Director, Center for the American Future
Roberta McClure  Y         
Rod Bordelon          YSenior Fellow, Center for Economic Prosperity
Ron Simmons          YDistinguished Senior Fellow, Right on Work
Roy Maynard          YSenior Writer
Ryan Brannan      YY   Economic Freedom Policy Analyst
Ryan Walters          YAttorney
Sally Lay   YYY     Director of Development
Sam Johnson          YLegislative Fellow
Sarah Atnipp Partin          YDirector of Major Gifts
Sarah French     YYYYYYSenior Counselor and Director of Grants
Sarah Silberstein          YPress Secretary
Scott Peyton          YState Director, Louisiana, Right on Crime
Scott Specht    YYY    Donor Relations Manager
Shae Cali          YSenior fellow, Safe Streets & Second Chances
Shannon Tracy         Y Communications Associate, Right on Crime
Shari Hanarahan  Y         
Shari HanrahanYY YYYYYY YSpecial Campaigns Director
Shelby Sterling          YPolicy Analyst, Think Local Liberty
Spencer Harris       YY  Policy Analyst, Center for Health Care Policy
Stephanie Lyles Y          
Stephanie Matthews          YSenior Campaign Director, Next Generation Texas
Stephen Pickett          YHealthcare Economist
Stephen Robinson         YYAudio-Video Production Manager
Steve Rowe          YDevelopment Officer
Susan Combs         Y Visiting Senior Fellow
Talmadge Heflin   YYYYYYYYDirector, Center for Fiscal Policy
Tarah Nypaver         YYSenior Director of National Fundraising
Ted Hadzi-Antich          YSenior Attorney, Center for the American Future
Thomas Lindsay        YYYDirector, Center for Innovation in Education
Tonda BungeY          Director of Operations
Tracie Groh         Y Center for the American Future, Paralegal
Trevor McGuire         Y Policy Analyst, Center for Higher Education & Center for Tenth Amendment
Vance Ginn         Y Economist, Center for Fiscal Policy
Vikrant Reddy       YY  Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice
Wendy Lee GrammY     Y    Chairman
Whitney Klenzendorf          YDevelopment Manager
Will Franklin   Y        
Yvonne Simental          YParalegal
Zoë O’Herin Miller          YDirector of Federal Affairs

Scholars (Listed in 2015)

  • Brooke L. Rollins — President and CEO
  • The Honorable Chuck DeVore — Vice President of National Initiatives
  • The Honorable Arlene Wohlgemuth — Executive Director
  • Bill Peacock — Vice President of Research; Director, Center for Economic Freedom
  • Joshua Treviño — Vice President of Strategy
  • Michael Barba — Policy Analyst, Center for Education Freedom
  • Derek M. Cohen — Deputy Director, Center for Effective Justice
  • The Honorable Susan Combs — Visiting Senior Fellow
  • John Davidson — Director, Center for Health Care Policy
  • The Honorable Doug Domenech — Director, Fueling Freedom Project
  • Vance Ginn — Economist, Center for Fiscal Policy
  • Greg Glod — Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice & Right on Crime
  • The Honorable Kent Grusendorf — Senior Fellow & Director, Center for Education Freedom
  • The Honorable Talmadge Heflin — Director, Center for Fiscal Policy
  • The Honorable Robert Henneke — Director, Center for the American Future
  • Allegra Hill — Policy Analyst, Center for Local Governance
  • Kathleen Hunker — Senior Policy Analyst, Center for Economic Freedom and Managing Editor
  • Marc Levin — Director, Center for Effective Justice & Right on Crime
  • Thomas Lindsay — Director, Center for Higher Education & Director, Center for Tenth Am…
  • Mario Loyola — On temporary leave
  • Adam Luck — Right on Crime State Director, Oklahoma
  • Joe Luppino-Esposito — Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice & Right on Crime
  • Trevor McGuire — Policy Analyst, Center for Higher Education & Center for Tenth Amendm…
  • Dianna Muldrow — Policy Analyst, Center for Effective Justice and Right on Crime
  • Kate E. Murphy — Mental Health Policy Fellow
  • James Quintero — Director, Center for Local Governance
  • Joel Stonedale — Attorney, Center for the American Future
  • Leigh Thompson — Policy Analyst, Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment
  • Chance Weldon — Center for the American Future, Attorney
  • The Honorable Kathleen Hartnett White — Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence & Director, Armstrong Center…

Fellows (2015)

  • The Honorable Susan Combs — Visiting Senior Fellow
  • The Honorable Kent Grusendorf — Senior Fellow & Director, Center for Education Freedom
  • Mario Loyola — On temporary leave
  • Kate E. Murphy — Mental Health Policy Fellow
  • The Honorable Kathleen Hartnett White — Distinguished Senior Fellow-in-Residence & Director, Armstrong Center…


February 14, 2022

H. Sterling Burnett featured guest speaker Jason Isaac, director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation‘s Life:Powered project, on an episode of the Heartland Daily Podcast. [63]

“As it stands, subsidized renewable power sources forced onto the system have left Texans vulnerable to power outages, a problem that could worsen in the future,” Burnett claimed in the podcast’s description.

Discussing the Texas power outages in 2021, Burnett commented:

“I’m saying we used to have other coal plants, but they were not just off line they had been closed. We had a lot of wind and solar, more wind in Texas than solar, but some solar that suddenly was politically mandated, but was not putting power on the grid. So that’s the day. But what built up to it?”

Jason Isaac responded:

Yeah, and it’s really these market distorting policies that have propped up one form of generation over another, put us in this situation to begin with. And you’ve seen a decline in thermal generation over the last seven years because they can’t compete. And that’s the big thing. The market design is the problem when you have wind, generate electricity because of the investment tax credit, the production tax credit, the property tax exemptions they get from the state of Texas and other incentives.”

“We shouldn’t depend on variable sources of unreliable electric generation on our grid. Because then where we are at the whims of nature, especially especially when we have reliable forms of thermal generation that are out there,” Isaac said.

April 28, 2020

TPPF‘s Life:Powered project published research that, according to Life:Powered’s Jason Isaac in RealClear Energy, is justification for why “government should not continue to spend the American people’s hard-earned tax dollars on unsustainable renewable technologies that don’t strengthen our electric grid.” [61]

“Ultimately, the best path forward is to acknowledge the distorting effects of subsidies on the cost and availability of the energy we all depend on every day — and phase them out once and for all,” Isaac concludes. [61]

April 6, 2020

TPPF, represented by Kevin Roberts, was signatory to an American Energy Alliance letter to President Donald Trump supporting the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule which would scrap federal fuel economy mandates under the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) program. [62]

Describing CAFE, the letter contends: “Those families and individuals who prefer or need trucks, SUVs, and crossovers pay more to subsidize those who buy smaller vehicles or electric vehicles under the existing mandate. This significant, needless, and unjust cost is a very real regressive tax on American families that has made our country worse off.” [62]

May 9, 2019

Texas Public Policy Foundation, represented by Kevin Roberts, signed on to an open letter organized by the American Energy Alliance designed to fight against an electric vehicle tax credit. [58]

The American Energy Alliance has organized a coalition to proclaim in one unified voice that there should be no expansion of the misguided electric vehicle tax credit,” Thomas Pyle wrote in a statement, quoted at The Daily Caller. There is no question that the electric vehicle tax credit distorts the auto market to no gain.” [59]

According to Pyle and others who signed the letter, electric vehicle tax credits “overwhelmingly benefit the rich.” DeSmog’s Koch vs. Clean project has systematically debunked this, among other well-rehearsed talking points and misinformation put forward by industry about electric vehicles. [59]

The letter cites research by the Pacific Research Institute (PRI), a group that has received over $600,000 from ExxonMobil and millions from “dark money” groups DonorsTrust and Donors Capital Fund

August 2018

The Texas Observer reported TPPF had launched a new anti-wind campaign, describing it as “ the kind of thing you’d expect to see from a seedy advocacy group, not a would-be policy braintrust.” [56]

The campaign was branded with the slogan “End Renewable Energy Subsidies.” In one op-ed titled “Renewable energy subsidies are wrong for Texas,” a TPPF policy analyst decries subsidies for wind power suggesting they cause the closure of coal plants: [57]

“Many things led to the closures, but the profitability of coal plants in the face of billions of dollars of subsidies for renewable energy—particularly wind—is certainly among the most powerful,” TPPF policy analyst Cutter W. González wrote.  [57]

According to González, “If we want our neighbors to live healthy lives, if we believe in an open, democratic political process, and if we believe in the prosperity provided by the free market, our current path of subsidizing renewable energy is the wrong one.” [57]

TPPF also launched a “trailer” for an upcoming series critical of wind power:  [56]

As the Observer noted, while TPPF argued that wind turbines were unsightly, it had previously fought against fracking bans. In Denton, Texas, a few years previously, “Fracking wells were popping up everywhere, including right next to homes, playgrounds and hospitals. They looked ugly, made noise, featured industrial lighting and exposed people to pollution.” TPPF fought against the Denton ban in the next legislative session, arguing there were already sufficient means for “residents who have legitimate concerns about nuisance” to “seek relief in the courts, and within Texas’ existing regulatory framework.” [57]

On August 15, TPPF made a presentation in Georgetown at an event titled “100% Renewable Isn’t Doable.” According to the Observer, “Much of TPPF’s information was incomplete or missing context” and some “was flat-out wrong,” pointing to an argument by one speaker that large-scale renewable production is impossible because they are “dependent on rare earth metals controlled by the Chinese.” [57]

In a statement about the anti-wind campaign, TPPF Communications Director Alicia Pierce said its experts were concerned with the  “increasing harm renewable subsidies have caused to the reliability of the Texas and the national electricity grid,” and were “ramping up for a debate about subsidies that will likely take place in the next legislative session and in Washington.” [57]

Asked about funding, Pierce responded: “Out of a respect for donor privacy,” Pierce said, “we don’t disclose that information.” [57]

November 8, 2017

The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing on the nomination of Kathleen Hartnett-White to be a member of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), and for  Andrew Wheeler to be Deputy Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. View Hartnett-White’s opening statement here. [50][51]

Senator Carper said in his opening statement:[50]

The nominee to carry on this important work must be someone who can build alliances. Someone who can work with Congress and be a credible leader. Unfortunately, in my view the nominee before us today, Kathleen Hartnett White, does not in my opinion meet this standard. 

In her years serving the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, an thereafter, Mrs. White has shown a distain for science. A disregard for the laws and regulations already on the books and a staggering disrespect for people who have views with which she disagrees.

Mrs. White, who has been asked to hold the top environmental position in the Whitehouse, has shown that she is not only a science denier, but actively promotes misinformation on climate, on ozone, on mercury, particulate matter and other known health hazards that impact our air and our waterways.

From describing the renewable fuel standard as ‘unethical’ to comparing people who believe in climate programs to ‘pagans’, to saying environmentalism will lead to mass starvation or other large-scale calamities, her tone, her words, her actions, are simply unacceptable.”

Senator Fischer voiced concerns about Hartnett-White’s use of “flawed data” as recently as 2014 and 2016 with regards to the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), pointing to a 2014 example of where Hartnett-White had made a statement on how “ethanol prices in the United States have led to food riots in several countries over the last few years.” She asked whether they could be confident that Hartnett-White would “check data” and “check facts” before offering advice or optoins to the President.

October 12, 2017

As first reported by Hannah Northey on Twitter and later at E&E News, President Donald Trump named TPPF‘s Kathleen-Hartnett to chair the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), pending approval. Rick Perry, who previously appointed Hartnett White to the role she held at the Texas Council on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) from 2004 to 2007, had reportedly advocated for her to run for the position at CEQ[45][46][47], [48]

As head of the CEQ, Hartnett White would be in charge of coordinating interagency science, climate, and environmental policy and oversee things such as the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) review process and agency compliance with that law. [47]

Though CEQ oversees the NEPA process, it remains unclear how seriously Hartnett White will take the NEPA review process, for decades seen as a bedrock of U.S. environmental regulation since NEPA became law in 1970,” DeSmog’s Steve Horn reported[47]

Hartnett White will go through a U.S. Senate confirmation hearing process, where she will likely face questions regarding her history of promoting fossil fuels and denying climate change. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) released a press statement critical of Hartnett White’s appointment: [47]

At least Butch and Sundance had to put some effort into robbing banks and trains,” Ken Cook, EWG‘s president, said in a press statement. “If Hartnett White joins Administrator Pruitt, polluters will stroll through the front doors of both the EPA and the White House, no questions asked, as the rampant looting of environmental and public health protection policies continues.” [49]

December 8, 2016

The Texas Public Policy foundation co-hosted, with the Heritage Foundation, ”At the Crossroads III: Energy and Climate Policy Summit.” The event describes itself as “the premier energy-and-climate policy event in America,” and, as before, promises to attract a range of prominent climate change deniers. The event description invites attendees to “Join national policymakers, leading energy experts, and the field’s most innovative minds to explore what’s next in energy policy, what’s coming in climate science, and how you may affect both.” See video footage on YouTube[38]

The agenda lists the following speakers:

  • Brooke Rollins, President, Texas Public Policy Foundation
  • Becky Norton Dunlop, Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow, The Heritage Foundation
  • The Honorable Mike Lee (R-UT), Member, Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources, and Chairman, Subcommittee on Water & Power
  • The Honorable Lamar Smith (R-TX), Chairman, House Committee on Science, Space and Technology
  • The Honorable Pete Olson (R-TX), Chairman, Subcommittee on Energy & Power, House Committee on Energy & Commerce 
  • The Honorable Gary Palmer (R-TX), Member, House Committee on Science, Space and Technology
  • Michael Needham, Chief Executive Officer, Heritage Action for America – Moderator
  • The Honorable James Inhofe (R-OK), Chairman, Senate Environment & Public Works Committee
  • The Honorable Kathleen Hartnett White, Director, Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment, TPPF
  • Stephen Moore, Distinguished Visiting Fellow, The Heritage Foundation
  • Bud Brigham, Chairman, Brigham Resources, and Founder, Anthem Ventures – Moderator
  • David W. Kreutzer, Ph.D., Senior Research Fellow, Center for Data Analysis, The Heritage Foundation
  • Patrick J. Michaels, Director, Center for the Study of Science, Cato Institute
  • Mark P. Mills, Chief Executive Officer, Digital Power Group; Senior Fellow, The Manhattan Institute; and Faculty Fellow, McCormick School of Engineering and Applied Science, Northwestern University
  • Horace Cooper, Adjunct Fellow, National Center for Public Policy Research – Moderator
  • Patrick Forkin, Vice President Strategy & Global Energy Analytics, Peabody Energy
  • Allen Gilmer, President, Texas Independent Petroleum Producers Association
  • Karen Harbert, President, Institute for 21st Century Energy, U.S. Chamber of Commerce (Invited)
  • Nick Loris, The Herbert and Joyce Morgan Fellow, The Heritage Foundation – Moderator
  • Dr. Richard Lindzen, Alfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology, MIT 
  • Dr. Willie Soon, Astrophysicist and Independent Scientist 
  • Andrew M. Grossman, Co-Founder, Free Speech in Science Project – Moderator
  • Dr. William Happer, Emeritus Professor of Physics, Princeton University
  • Dr. Craig Idso, Chairman, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
  • Dr. Roy Spencer, Principal Research Scientist, University of Alabama in Huntsville

Many of the speakers at the event have close ties to Donald Trump and his transition team. Becky Norton Dunlop, Ronald Reagan Distinguished Fellow at the Heritage Foundation, was deputy to the senior adviser on President-Elect Donald Trump’s transition team for policy and personnel. [40]

Brooke Rollins, President and CEO of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, is on Trump’s economic advisory council. Two other members of Trump’s “economic advisory team,” are Kathleen Hartnett-White and Stephen Moore. Hartnett-White was also in the running for a top EPA position. [41]

Climate change denier James Inhofe was said to be joining Trump’s National Security Advisory Council. Other connections include David Kreutzer, who is on Trump’s “landing team” and Allen Gilmer, CEO at Drilling Info, Inc., who donated $2,700 to Donald John Trump, Sr. on September 28, 2016 according to disclosures. [42], [43]

Doug Domenech, director of the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s “Fueling Freedom” project, wrote about the proceedings at The Hill. Domenech outlined the common climate change denial message shared among the speakers: “ Is climate change real? Yes, it has happened in the past and will happen in the future.  Is man making an impact on the climate? Perhaps but in very small ways. But the overarching consensus remains the climate change we are experiencing is by no means catastrophic.” [39]

During his presentation, Richard Lindzen said “the only meaningful question would be whether we are seeing anything sufficiently unusual to warrant concern and the answer to this is unambiguously no.” [39]

Corbin Robertson of Quintana Resources said, “I’m gonna start out with a confession, I’m guilty. I’m guilty of providing goods and services and clean affordable energy to the world’s growing population and now the environmentalists and the media want to convict me for my services to humanity.” [39]

December 15, 2016

Greenpeace UK‘s Unearthed profiled some of the links between TPPF and the Trump Administration, also digging deeper into funding that had been previously revealed in tax documents examined in 2012 by the Texas Observer[37]

Unearthed highlighted Centrica energy’s tens of thousands of dollars in donations to the TPPF through its subsidiary Direct Energy. When contacted by Unearthed, Centrica refused to disclosed the total sum it had donated to TPPF, but said that it has no plans to stop. [44]

In its last annual report, Centrica noted: “We are also making an important contribution to address big issues in society related to energy: from energy pricing and vulnerability to energy security and climate change.” [44]

Caroline Lucas MP told Unearthed[44]

For a company that has claimed to be at the forefront of action on climate change, it is simply astounding that Centrica is donating money to climate deniers.” 

Now that these links have come to light, we need a clear commitment from Centrica to end all further donations. It is shameful that one of our largest energy companies is linked to this reckless and irresponsible organisation, and I hope an apology will be issued shortly.” [44]

In addition to the Centrica connection, Unearthed notes strong connections with Republican politicians and TPPF. For example, former presidential candidate Ted Cruz, who was a senior fellow at the organization, as well as energy secretary Rick Perry.  [44]

In 2010, Perry published Fed Up! with TPPF, and wrote in his authors note thanking the think tank for fighting the “perils of environmental policy based on the hysteria of global warming.” [44]

Doug Domenech, who led Trump’s department of interior transition team, worked on TPPF‘s “Fueling Freedom” project.[44]

June 17, 2016

Kathleen Hartnett-White, director of the Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, authored an article in The Hill calling for restraint of the “imperial EPA.” [31]

Hartnett White promotes bill H.R. 3880, “The Stopping the EPA Overreach Act.” The bill would prevent the EPA from regulating carbon dioxide, methane and three other greenhouse gases. According to Hartnett White, the EPA‘s treatment of carbon dioxide as a pollutant is an example of “regulatory overreach.” [31]

“The truth is that our bodies, blood and bones are built of carbon! Carbon dioxide is a necessary nutrient for plant life, acting as the catalyst for the most essential energy conversion process on planet earth: photosynthesis,” she writes. “[…] How do our national leaders square their public vilification of carbon dioxide with fundamental scientific and economic realities? Such political propaganda has now educated at least two generations of Americans who think carbon is a killer instead of the stuff of life on the earth.” [31]

June 13, 2016

The Texas Public Policy Foundation was listed as a creditor in Peabody Energy’s 2016 bankruptcy filings, reports the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD/PRWatch). [27]

While the available bankruptcy documents do not list the scale or dates of funding, they outline Peabody Energy’s financial ties to a large network of groups promoting climate change denial. [28]

Prominent individuals appearing in the documents include climate deniers Willie SoonRichard LindzenRoy Spencer and Richard Berman. The long list of organizations also includes groups such as Americans for ProsperityAmerican Legislative Exchange CouncilCFACTInstitute for Energy ResearchState Policy Network, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and dozens more. [29]

The Guardian also analysed and reported on the Peabody bankruptcy findings: [30]

These groups collectively are the heart and soul of climate denial,” said Kert Davies, founder of the Climate Investigation Center, who has spent 20 years tracking funding for climate denial. “It’s the broadest list I have seen of one company funding so many nodes in the denial machine.”

The company’s filings reveal funding for a range of organisations which have fought Barack Obama’s plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions, and denied the very existence of climate change. […]

Among Peabody’s beneficiaries, the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change has insisted – wrongly – that carbon emissions are not a threat but “the elixir of life” while the American Legislative Exchange Council is trying to overturn Environmental Protection Agency rules cutting emissions from power plants. Meanwhile, Americans for Prosperity campaigns against carbon pricing. The Oklahoma chapter was on the list. […]

The breadth of the groups with financial ties to Peabody is extraordinary. Thinktanks, litigation groups, climate scientists, political organisations, dozens of organisations blocking action on climate all receiving funding from the coal industry,” said Nick Surgey, director of research for the Center for Media and Democracy.

We expected to see some denial money, but it looks like Peabody is the treasury for a very substantial part of the climate denial movement.”

Notable organizations listed in the initial documents include:

Notable individuals named in the initial documents include the following:

May 26, 2016

Kathleen Hartnett-White, director of the Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment at the TPPF, went on the One American News Network’s Tipping Point to discuss Hillary Clinton’s energy policies. [32]

“A significant part of [Hillary’s] party is at a predominately extreme position on energy,” Hartnett-White says.  [32]

See video below. 

December 13, 2015

Writing as a guest blogger on Watts Up With That, CFACT‘s executive director Craig Rucker denounced the latest UN climate change agreement: [39]

“This agreement will not meaningfully alter the temperature of the Earth, even under the U.N.’s own computer models.

“The bad news is that it plants the seeds of a new UN climate regime that left unchecked will swell into a bureaucratic behemoth.”

November 19, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) arranged a “climate summitahead of the UN climate summit in Paris (COP21). [11]

Let’s celebrate CO2!” Patrick Moore declared at the event. “We know for absolute certain that carbon dioxide is the stuff of life, the foundation for life on earth,” he continued. [11]

According to Richard Lindzen, “Demonization of CO2 is irrational at best and even modest warming is mostly beneficial.” William Happer’s focus was on the previously-debunked theory that that global warming would be beneficial to plant growth without any negative effects. [12]

The event, titled “At The CrossRoads Energy & Climate Policy Summit,” featured many well-known climate change deniers and politicians. Speakers included: [35]

Robert E. MurrayFounder, Chairman, President, and CEO of Murray Energy Corporation, the nation’s largest underground coal mining commpany.
H. Leighton StewardMember, TheRightClimateStuff.com
Dr. Don EasterbrookProfessor Emeritus of Geology at Western Washington University
Dr. Will HapperCyrus Fogg Brackett Professor of Physics, Emeritus, Princeton University
Dr. Richard LindzenAlfred P. Sloan Professor of Meteorology, Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences, MIT
Dr. Patrick MooreAuthor and founding member of Greenpeace
Dr. E. Calvin BeisnerSpokesman for the Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation
Horace CooperAdjunct Fellow, National Center for Public Policy Research
Dr. Caleb RossiterAdjunct Professor, School of International Service and Adjunct Professor, Department of Mathematics and Statistics, College of Arts and Sciences at American University
Mark P. MillsSenior Fellow, Manhattan Institute and founder and CEO, Digital Power Group
Dr. Hal DoironFormer NASA Engineer and Chairman, The Right Climate Stuff Research Team
Walter CunninghamFighter Pilot, Col. USMCR-Ret.; Physicist; Apollo 7 Astronaut
Dr. George L. StegemeierPresident, GLS Engineering, Inc.
Stephen MooreDistinguished Visiting Fellow on the Project for Economic Growth at the Heritage Foundation
Robert L. Bradley Jr.CEO, Institute for Energy Research
Mike NasPartner, Environmental and Legislative Affairs Practice Group, Jackson Walker L.L.P.
Marc MoranoFounder, ClimateDepot.com
Ray GiffordPartner, Wilkinson Barker Knauer LLP
Brian LloydExecutive Director, Public Utility Commission of Texas
John CornynU.S. Senator and Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn

November 18, 2015

Shortly before the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Paris (COP21), the Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Kathleen Hartnett White was interviewed by The Daily Signal where she “outlines important climate questions.” [13]

According to Hartnett White, there hasn’t been significant warming in 18 years: 

“Temperatures have not warmed as predicted by the models over the last 18 years. And extreme weather events have not been more frequent or more intense than in the 20th century.” [13]

She argues coal, natural gas, and nuclear power are superior to wind and solar given they have a smaller “physical footprint” and that the EPA‘s clean power plan would “disfigure millions of acres of open space” with wind turbines. 

“The kind of energy available in fossil fuels – abundant, affordable, concentrated, versatile, reliable, controllable, storable – was and remains a necessary condition of monumental improvements in human welfare and economic growth that emerged around 1800,” she said. “Policies to supplant fossil fuels – without a fully comparable substitute proven at scale – are immoral.” [13]

With reference to the UN COP21 climate conference, she writes that “We don’t need to supplant fossil fuels at this point in time. We need to help developing countries increase energy availability for their people and use emission control technologies to manage real pollutants.” She concludes that the U.S. Congress should recognize that “CO2 is not a pollutant within the regulatory jurisdiction of the Clean Air Act.” [13]

November 18, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s President and CEO Brooke Rollins was a guest on Bill Bennett’s “Morning in America” where he discussed “the prosecution of Exxon-Mobil, how energy issues affect foreign policy, and TPPF’s At the Crossroads Energy & Climate Policy Summit.” [14]

October 23, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation issued the following statement on a lawsuit filed by a coalition challenging the Clean Power Plan: [15]

“Many states have once again united in opposition to oppressive tyranny,” said Robert Henneke, director of the Center for the American Future. “Unfortunately, the abuse comes not from without, but directly from our federal government. The multi-state lawsuit proceeding forward today has nothing to do with the environment as the Clean Power Plan has little impact upon worldwide temperatures. Rather, the lawsuits launched today represent an assertion of Tenth Amendment sovereignty against an oppressive regime aimed at harming middle class families through higher energy costs.”

“Today, a shocking 24 states have joined together to sue the EPA over the Plan which only impacts 47 states,” said Doug Domenech, director of the Fueling Freedom Project. “When more than half of the states affected say a rule is unconstitutional, it is clear something is wrong.  We applaud the actions of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton in recognizing the flawed rule and its impact on Texas families and businesses.”

August 31, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation issued a statement supporting a federal court injunction against the Environmental Protection Agency’s redefinition of “waters of the United States.” The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment Director Kathleen Hartnett White and Center for the American Future Robert Henneke issued the following statement: [16]

“WOTUS is not about clean water, as the EPA claimed during its expensive and pervasive advertising campaign,” said White. “WOTUS is about amending the definitions of well understood words into tortured versions of themselves so that the EPA can seize control of dry land where water may flow after heavy rains. This means that if common drainage ditches or the channels between planted rows of crops contribute water flow, regardless of frequency or volume, to a downstream water it would categorically be within EPA’s purview. The average person will be forced to obtain a permit, potentially costing hundreds of thousands of dollars, from the U.S. Corps of Engineers just to erect a fence or put in a driveway.” [16]

“Respect for private property rights is tantamount to protection of individual liberty,” said Henneke. “This preliminary ruling is only the first step towards reversal of the EPA’s unconstitutional regulatory policies.”

August 19, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation issued a statement in opposition to a rule proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which would cut methane emissions from oil and natural gas drilling including hydraulic fracturing (fracking).  [17]

Without citing any scientific sources, Leigh Thompson, policy analyst with the Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, writes that “the warming potential of methane has been overstated by a factor of as much as 100 according to some scientists. This new regulation is nothing more than a thinly veiled attack on one of the most successful industries in the nation.” [17]

July 21, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) launched an initiative titled the “Interstate Power Compact” designed as an agreement between participating states to “prevent the federal overreach of the Clean Power Plan.” [18]

The TPPF‘s Power Compact would be working directly against the EPA‘s attempts to reduce emissions from existing power plants, which TPPF argues would be hurtful to consumers. [18]

March 4, 2015

The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Armstrong Center for Energy and the Environment released a pro-hydraulic fracturing report titled “Fracking Facts: The Science, Economics, and Legal Realities.” The report (PDF) claims to look at the science, debates, and impact of local fracking bans. [19], [20]

“The scientific evidence used to support fracking bans looks weak when viewed in context,” said The TPPF“s Environment Policy Analyst Leigh Thompson. “When light is shed on the economic and legal facts surrounding fracking bans, the justification for continuing or pursuing them erodes entirely. This is why it’s important to delve deeper than media talking points that push policy based science.”

DeSmogBlog has conducted its own research into the hydraulic fracturing (fracking) controversy in the report Fracking the Future (PDF).

September 25–26, 2014

The Texas Public Policy Foundation hosted “At the Crossroads: Energy & Climate Policy Summit.” According to the event description, Sessions will explore the latest in climate science; current federal regulations and litigation; the history, politics, and economics behind man-made global warming; energy alternatives to fossil fuels; and how energy factors into prosperity and poverty. [34]

Speakers included:

Videos of Frank Clemente and Mark P. Mills below:

June 2014

The Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Kathleen Hartnett-White authored a TPPF study titled “Fossil Fuels: The Moral Case.” White says that her research was inspired by a “comprehensively researched monograph” written by fellow climate change denier Indur Goklany titled “Humanity Unbound.” [33]

White describes the thesis of her paper as that “fossil fuels, as a necessary condition of the Industrial Revolution, made modern living standards possible and vastly improved living conditions across the world.”  [33]

”[…] the greatest beneficiaries of this energy revolution known as the Industrial Revolution were average workers and the most impoverished. Increasing emission of man-made CO2 is tightly correlated with this monumental achievement.” [33] 

According to White, ”[fossil ]fuels are superior on many levels to the current alternatives.” With reference to climate change, she claims that evidence for dangerous climate change “weakens” over time.  [33]

Mandates to force an abrupt energy transition from fossil fuels to renewable sources are naïve and fraught with peril for highly industrialized economies. As this paper detailed, energy sources are not necessarily interchangeable. In energy density, abundance, reliability, versatility, and other advantages, fossil fuels are far superior to wind, solar, and biomass. […]” [33]

IPCC science claims of 95 percent certainty that human activity is causing climate calamity are more like the dogmatic claims of ideologues and clerics than scientific conclusions. “ she writes.  [33]

Hartnett-White spoke about the study at an event hosted by the Heritage Foundation. See video below:

June 16, 2014

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) released “Extreme Weather and Climate Change: What the Science Really Says,” a “policy brief” (PDF) that claims there is not a link between extreme weather events and climate change. [21], [22]

“In evaluating the different potential policy responses regarding climate change, it is important to look at the facts, and not to be swayed by extreme claims regarding extreme weather,” the document concludes.

The report is written by the TPPF‘s policy analyst, Josiah Neeley. Neeley’s previous experience was working for the law firm of “Bopp, Coleson & Bostrom” where he specialized in the area of Constitutional Litigation. His past publications for the Texas Public Policy Foundation have included pieces on “Free-Market Environmentalism,” and articles critical of the EPA. [23]

September 13, 2010

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF) released a report (PDF) designed as a “Legislator’s Guide to The Issues” on Climate Science which asserts that “The IPCC‘s modeled science of human-induced global warming is far too uncertain to justify a legislated transformation of U.S. energy systems evolved over a century.” [6]

The report lists the following as “Facts” (note that these arguments have been debunked by SkepticalScience):

  • “… There is no proven causal link between increased man-made CO2 emissions and increased global temperatures.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #47)
  • “Global average temperatures have declined over the last decade.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #5)
  • “The slight global warming observed over the last century (0.7C/1.3F) is not unprecedented.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #1)
  • “…increased CO2 in the upper atmosphere does not have the ‘temperature forcing’ strength assumed by IPCC science.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #13)
  • CO2 is not a pollutant but is necessary for human life. Photosynthesis by plants would be impossible without CO2. CO2 concentrations in the ambient atmosphere have no adverse effects on human health.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #41, #45)
  • CO2 is naturally present in the atmosphere at a level of approximately 270 parts per million (ppm). Over the last century, fossil fuel emissions (CO2) have increased the current ambient level to approximately 390 ppm.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #33)
  • OSHA sets the permissible exposure level for CO2 at 5,000 ppm.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #41)
  • “Water vapor and clouds constitute 90 percent of the earth’s greenhouse gases. CO2 contributes 3.5 percent.” (See SkepticalScience Myth #34)

Recommendations given by TPPF include to “Suspend state programs that require or incentivize GHG reduction pending a rigorous review of IPCC science,” and to “Avoid state and federal mandates to reduce CO2.” Resources cited by the report include studies by prominent climate change skeptics S. Fred Singer, Craig Idso, Dennis T. Avery, Bjorn Lomborg, and Roy Spencer.

February 2010

The Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPFReleased a “Fact Sheet” titled “The Texas Economy: How Would Climate Change Legislation Impact Economic Growth and Jobs?”  [24]

The report discussed the Markey-Waxman bill’s impact on the Texas economy, concluding that if the bill is implemented, “the Texas economy will significantly decline and thousands of valuable jobs will be lost. Energy intensive industries with foreign competition may close operations in Texas and relocate in countries without similar GHG mandates.” 

Texas Public Policy Foundation Contact & Address 

As of June 2016, the Texas Public Policy Foundation listed the following contact information on its website: [26]

Texas Public Policy Foundation 
901 Congress Avenue
Austin, Texas 78701
(512) 472-2700 (phone)
(512) 472-2728 (fax)
[email protected]

According to the Center for Media and Democracy’s PRWatch, Progress Texas executive director Matt Glazer has said that TPPF is central to ALEC in Texas, helping to shape “model legislation” in areas such as higher education, healthcare, civil and criminal justice.

“The foundation develops legislation that then goes through the ALEC process,” Glazer said during a January 11 news conference to draw attention to Walker’s appearance in Texas. He also said that the TPPF helps staff some ALEC task forces and helps to develop and distribute their “model legislation.” [25]

Social Media


  1. “A Night to Remember… Gala Pays Tribute to Founders and Supporters of Liberty” (PDF), Veritas (publication of Texas Public Policy Institute, Issue No. 3 (2009). Archived .pdf on  file at DeSmogBlog. 
  2. About,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSYgqkC3
  3. CENTERS,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Accessed December 1, 2015.
  4. Forrest Wilder. “Revealed: The Corporations and Billionaires that Fund the Texas Public Policy Foundation,” Texas Observer, August 24, 2012. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSaKUYXS
  5. Bud Brigham. “Clean Power Plan Allows Government to Control Our Lives,” Townhall.com, November 30, 2015. Republished by the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSfJ4B8Z
  6. Kathleen Hartnett White. CLIMATE CHANGE & CARBON DIOXIDE (CO2) REGULATION” (PDF), Texas Public Policy Institute 2009-2010 Legislator’s Guide to the Issues, January 2009. Archived May 10, 2012. Archived .pdf on file at DesmogBlog.
  7. Texas Public Policy Foundation,” Conservative Transparency. August 21, 2018.
  8. Board of Directors,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSwP04qx
  9. Staff,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Accessed December 2, 2015. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.
  10. About TPPF,” Archived March 17, 2012. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.
  11. Marc Morano. “Prominent Scientists Declare Climate Claims Ahead of UN Summit ‘Irrational’ – ‘Based On Nonsense’ – ‘Leading us down a false path’,” Climate Depot, November 19, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dRDNqepY
  12. CO2 is plant food,” SkepticalScience. Accessed November 30, 2015.
  13. “Here’s What Will Not Be Discussed at the Upcoming U.N. Climate Confernece in Paris,” The Daily Signal, November 18, 2015. Republished by the Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dShEpvHO
  14. (Press Release). “Tomorrow: TPPF President on Bill Bennett Show,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, November 17, 2015. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URL:  http://www.webcitation.org/6dSkds5zP
  15. (Press Release) “TPPF Statement On Texas Lawsuit To Halt Epa’S Clean Power Plan,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, October 23, 2015. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSkxdfxe
  16. (Press Release). “TPPF Statement On Federal Court Injunction Against Environmental Protection Agency’s Redefinition Of ‘Waters Of The United States,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, August 19, 2015. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSmplUOg
  17. TPPF Statement On Proposed EPA Methane Emission Rule,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, August 19, 2015. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSnKaTYE
  18. Texas Public Policy Foundation Launches Interstate Power Compact,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, July 21, 2015. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSnknwXV
  19. Leigh Thompson. “TPPF Releases New Research On Fracking,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, March 4, 2015. WebCite URL:  http://www.webcitation.org/6dSo1IYec
  20. Fracking Facts: The Science, Economics, and Legal Realities” (PDF), Texas Public Policy Foundation, March, 2015. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.
  21. (Press Release) Josiah Neeley. “TPPF Releases Extreme Weather and Climate Change: What the Science Really Says,” Texas Public Policy Foundation, June 16, 2014. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSe24EfF
  22. Josiah Neeley. “Extreme Weather and Climate Change: What the Science Really Says” (PDF), Texas Public Policy Foundation, June, 2014. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog. 
  23. Josiah Neeley, Policy Analyst, Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived December 1, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSejteUs
  24. “The Texas Economy: How Would Climate Change Legislation Impact Economic Growth and Jobs?” (PDF), Texas Public Policy Foundation, February, 2010. Archived May 10, 2012. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.
  25. Mary Bottari. “Scott Walker’s Texas Rangers,” PRWatch, January 13, 2012. Archived December 2, 2015. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6dSk5V2i4
  26. Contact,” Texas Public Policy Foundation. Archived June 17, 2016. WebCite URL: http://www.webcitation.org/6iLBIxRHM
  27. Nick Surgey. “Peabody Coal Bankruptcy Reveals Climate Denial Network Funding,” PRWatch, June 13, 2016. Archived June 20, 2016. WebCite URL: http://www.webcitation.org/6iPmXjc4W
  28. In re: Peabody Energy Corporation, et al. Debtors,” United States Bankruptcy Court Eastern District of Missouri Eastern Division, Case 16-42529, May 27, 2016. Retrieved from DocumentCloud.
  29. Farron Cousins. “Court Documents Show Coal Giant Peabody Energy Funded Dozens Of Climate Denial Groups,” DeSmogBlog, June 13, 2016.
  30. Suzanne Goldenberg and Helena Bengtsson. “Biggest US coal company funded dozens of groups questioning climate change,” The Guardian, June 13, 2016. Archived June 20, 2016. WebCite URLhttp://www.webcitation.org/6iPnEUG1o
  31. Kathleen Hartnett White. “Restrain the imperial EPA,” The Hill, June 17, 2016. Archived July 4, 2016. WebCite URL: http://www.webcitation.org/6ikr92qdV
  32. Kathleen Hartnett-White on Tipping Point with Liz Wheeler,” YouTube video uploaded by Javelin DC, May 26, 2016.
  33. Kathleen Hartnett-White. “Fossil Fuels: The Moral Case” (PDF), Texas Public Policy Foundation, June 2014. Archived .pdf on file at DeSmogBlog.
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  45. Trump nominates Kathleen Hartnett White to be a member – and upon confirmation chairwoman – of the Council on Environmental Quality,” Twitter post by user @HMNorthey, October 12, 2017.
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