Today, the need to empower people left out of our investor-owned economy is greater than ever before, and co-ops are once again the engine of change. Electric co-ops, in whole or in part, serve over 90 percent of the poorest U.S. counties, making co-ops key to both energy democracy as well as creating an economy that works for all. (From New Economy Week 2015).
Large utility companies control about 75 percent of the electricity market in California. A hybrid between a public agency and private utility, the new Community Choice program is a model for communities that want greener, cheaper energy. (From New Economy Week 2015)
In response to the sustained and increasingly visible violence against Black communities in the U.S. and globally, a collective of more than 50 organizations representing thousands of Black people from across the country have come together with renewed energy and purpose to articulate a common vision and agenda.
Fostering resilient communities and building wealth in today’s local economies is necessary to achieve individual, regional, and national economic security. A community wealth building strategy employs a range of forms of community ownership and asset building strategies to build wealth in low-income communities. In so doing, community wealth building bolsters the ability of communities and individuals to increase asset ownership, anchor jobs locally, expand the provision of public services, and ensure local economic stability.
How do low-income communities learn to advance economically and build wealth? Low-income communities and communities of color, in challenging structural economic and social inequality, have historically grappled with tensions inherent to development. Who participates in, directs, and ultimately owns the economic-development process? In creating and sustaining new, inclusive economic institutions, how do community members cultivate and pass on skills, commitment and knowledge—especially among those who have long faced barriers to education and employment? And how should communities strike an appropriate balance between utilizing local knowledge and accessing outside expertise? This report draws on case studies of 11 different community economic development initiatives from across the United States to highlight a diverse set of powerful answers to these critical questions.
This is an "Energy Democracy for Beginners" session from CommonBound 2016 in which a few panelists draw out the vision and political framework of Energy Democracy and what it means in their respective communities and organizing work. They each provide an example project and briefly share their perspectives on strategies for Democratizing Energy and building the energy democracy movement.
View the recordings of these online discussions, organized by Local Futures, which address key issues in the debate around economic globalization and localization - from food and energy to education, trade, and the role of activists. Guests include Bill McKibben, Charles Eisenstein, Richard Heinberg, Manish Jain, Michael Shuman, and more.
Which kinds of renewable energy production really build community power? Rather than prescribe a single vision of what "energy democracy" might mean, this resource lets you explore and remix the basic elements of an inclusive and sustainable energy system, grounded in the agency of communities to shape their own ecological and economic futures.
This paper, released in the wake of the 2015 Paris climate talks, argues that globalization, the deregulation of trade and finance through free trade treaties, is the driving force behind climate change. As a result, the climate problem can only be tackled effectively if governments stop subsidizing globalization, and pursue localization instead.
This toolkit is a do-it-yourself tool for those who want to kick-start effective global-to-local action in their community or within an existing group. The toolkit uses the award-winning documentary film The Economics of Happiness as a springboard to discuss the broad impacts of the global economy and localization as a strategy for systemic change.