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  • Climate justice and energy democracy
February 10, 2020

Climate justice and energy democracy

Our climate and energy program stands where the climate crisis meets structural issues of ownership, control, and finance. We show how a just energy transition and the transition to a democratic economy can powerfully go hand in hand. 

With less than a decade left to significantly reorient our economy to avoid a cataclysmic cascade of effects of climate change, we must urgently go beyond incremental change and adopt transformational solutions. Our years of extensive research has shown how our political economy— through concentrated corporate power, unfettered growth, and limitless financial and resource extraction—drives the climate crisis and works to prevent meaningful action. 

With this sense of emergency in mind, our climate and energy program advocates game-changing, systemic interventions that have the structural power to move society away from ecological destruction and toward a reparative, regenerative economy. Our program works in four specific areas:

  • providing visionary research and policy proposals that help communities fight to take over their energy utilities as a decarbonization strategy
  • advising communities on the intersections between climate resilience and community wealth building
  • advocating the end the extraction of fossil fuels through nationalization of the domestic US oil and gas industry
  • offering designs for nonextractive finance that could support rapid decarbonization and more sustainable communities.

Our proposals have begun to move from the margins to the mainstream of the climate and energy conversation as we work with many activist and academic allies to marry deep research and effective advocacy,

 

February 17, 2020
Wind turbines behind solar panels

Supporting energy democracy through a Green New Deal

Five policy proposals to tackle an extractive economy.

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Green infrastructure Verde

Building Resiliency through Green Infrastructure: A Community Wealth Building Approach

How investments in the green infrastructure needed for climate resiliency can be leveraged to build community wealth with worker cooperatives and social enterprises.

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August 29, 2018
Taking Climate Action to the Next Level

Taking climate action to the next level

For over forty years we have known that avoiding disastrous climate change requires breaking fossil fuels’ hold on our economy and way of life. Yet, throughout all that time, debate, negotiations, and actions have fallen short in triggering, never mind managing, an energy transition. At this pivotal

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September 5, 2018
The Systemic Roadblocks to Climate Action

The Systemic Roadblocks to Climate Action

The challenge of mounting an adequate response to climate change has to be understood within the context of the larger systemic crisis facing the United States. The 1972 Limits to Growth, published when environmental movements were forming in this country, emphatically explained that our economic

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August 30, 2018
Quantitative Easing for the Planet

Quantitative Easing for the Planet

The United States can wield its sovereign monetary power to shift majority control of fossil fuel reserves away from profit-driven, short-minded shareholders to the public interest.

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September 3, 2018
Public Ownership for Energy Democracy

Public Ownership for Energy Democracy

Energy democracy—a new idea from the ranks of community organizers, labor, and renewable energy advocates who see our current energy system as broken and destructive—seeks to take on the political and economic change needed to tackle the energy transition holistically.

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September 3, 2018
An Anchor Strategy for the Energy Transition

An Anchor Strategy for the Energy Transition

While many cities and communities rely on a “smokestack chasing” approach to economic development, others are starting to focus on a new approach to economic development that centers people and place. Instead of measuring growth by just revenue, this approach, coined “community wealth-building,” strengthens the local economy through broader democratic ownership and control of business and jobs.

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September 4, 2018
Introduction - The Green Transition and the Next System

Introduction: The Green Transition and the Next System

When the Global Climate Action Summit convenes in San Francisco on September 12, 2018, one goal will be to affirm that the world beyond the Trumpian miasma is “still in” the Paris Accords. But the Summit seeks also to “demonstrate that stronger commitments are necessary, desirable and achievable.”

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May 10, 2021
A New Era of Public Power

A new era of public power: A vision for New York Power Authority in pursuit of climate justice

New Yorkers have the opportunity to demand, build, and benefit from a more democratic and equitable energy system. This report shows how the New York Public Authority can play a central role in meeting the state's sustainability and equity goals.
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