Mission Statement

To inform and shape sound public policy on earth resources, energy and the environment by:

  • Conducting cutting-edge social science research for quantitative policy analysis
  • Educating current and future leaders on the market, policy and technological challenges presented by energy, environmental and resource management issues
  • Promoting a policy making process informed by rigorous quantitative analysis based on sound economic and scientific principles
  • Providing a forum for national and global policy debate
  • Developing a research network across universities, the government and other research institutions

Institute Activities and Initiatives

  • Distinguished Lecture Series
  • Topic-based annual conference
  • Visiting scholars program
  • Collaborative research programs with external research institutions
  • Inter-disciplinary activities with other Mines research units and institutions

Areas of Research

  • Earth: Rare Earths and Critical Materials, Trade and Resources, Resources and Economic Growth, Minerals Policy, Commodity Price Dynamics.
  • Energy: Climate Policy, Electricity Regulation, Oil and Gas Safety Regulations, Hydraulic Fracturing, Unconventional Resource Policy, Transportation Policy, Renewable Mandates, Energy Security, Fuel Demand and Policies, Primary Fuel Contracting, Distributional Impacts of Energy Policy, Electricity Dispatch Optimization.
  • Environment: Climate and Carbon Policy, Criteria Pollution Regulation, Global Trade and the Environment, Abatement Mechanism Design, Environmental Policy and Fiscal Reforms, Oil Spills.

For more information, email payne-info@mines.edu.

“My vision is to leverage the Institute’s first-class academic research and have it serve as the go-to resource for those engaged in public policy discourse on some of the challenges shaping our future.”
– Jim Payne ’59, Geophysics

News and Research

Bazilian Tapped to Lead Payne Institute for Earth Resources

Morgan Bazilian, former lead energy specialist at the World Bank, joins Colorado School of Mines as the executive director of the Payne Institute for Earth Resources and research professor of public policy.

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Population Dynamics Thrust of the Integrated Multi-Sector, Multi-Scale Modeling Scientific Focus Area

Dr. Jared Carbone was awarded a U.S. Department of Energy grant in an interdisciplinary collaboration with researchers at NCAR, NREL, and PNNL, among others.

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Oil and the Global Economy

The Group of Thirty recently released the paper, Oil and the Global Economy. It includes insight from Philip Verleger, Jr., nonresident fellow of the Payne Institute for Earth Resources at Mines.

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Mines convenes second summit on abandoned mine lands

Colorado School of Mines convened a high-level summit on the closure of abandoned, historic mines on Nov. 14. The event, sponsored by the Payne Institute, focused on closure expectations, motivated by the problem of environmental, social and economic impact. Read more.

Final Report, Resources from AGI Critical Issues Forum

In 2016, the Payne Institute hosted the American Geosciences Institute Critical Issues Forum, “Addressing Changes in Regional Groundwater Resources: Lessons from the High Plains Aquifer.” Read the final report, view presentations, related fact sheets and maps for more information on the topic of groundwater.