The GND must put utilities under public control: Community ownership of power is the most promising path toward equity, democracy and renewable energy.

By Jackson Koeppel, Johanna Bozuwa and Liz Veazey, Inthesetimes.com February 6, 2019 Highland Park, Mich., is a small, majority-black community of three square miles, nestled in the center of Detroit, with some of the highest poverty and unemployment rates in the country. It’s suffered a series of indignities and setbacks over the years: a state emergency management takeover of the city and surrounding areas; a …

Community Microgrids

Bringing communities an unparalleled trifecta of economic, environmental, and resilience benefits Learn about our Community Microgrid Initiative What is a Community Microgrid? A Community Microgrid is a coordinated local grid area served by one or more distribution substations and supported by high penetrations of local renewables and other distributed energy resources (DER), such as energy storage and demand response. Community …

State Laws Slow Down High-Speed Internet for Rural America

State Laws Slow Down High-Speed Internet for Rural America, April Simpson, Pew Charitable Trust STATELINE ARTICLE January 11, 2019 Topics: Budget,Economy,Federal Impact & Social Issues  Electric cooperatives want to help bridge the digital divide between rural and urban America as more federal funding becomes available for rural broadband. But a 77-year-old law may prevent one of the nation’s poorest states from fully tapping into millions of …

Twice Burned, Once Shy—Why Californians Should Be Wary of Bailing Out PG&E Again

Publicly owned utilities in Missouri, Texas and Vermont have already deployed 100 percent renewable electricity systems.  And industry reliability data shows that the public power system tends to have better reliability, in large part because public owners don’t shortsightedly scrimp on maintenance for better quarterly returns.  Instead of investing billions in building and maintaining vulnerable transmission infrastructure, a publicly owned …

The latent, unused power of citizens—and the production of public collateral

The latent, unused power of citizens—and the production of public collateral, Ann Pettifor, Democracy Collaborative and Next System Project, January 24, 2019, MONEY & BANKING Introduction It was just a montage of words uttered over a video in the summer of 2018. Soon the words went viral. They helped unseat a Wall Street-friendly Democrat—one primed to be the next congressional leader. They …

From Private Profit to Public Alternatives

From Private Profit to Public Alternatives Shahrzad Habibi, Research and Policy Director, In The Public Interest more Thomas Hanna, Director of Research at The Democracy Collaborative more Cat Hobbs, Founder & Director, We Own It more,  Adam Simpson, Program Associate, The Democracy Collaborative more January 24, 2019 This week we’re talking about public ownership and privatization with three special guests. We are joined by …

Municipal enterprise

By Stephanie Geller, Research Specialist, Community Wealth Building, Democracy Collaborative, January 15, 2019 DEMOCRATIC OWNERSHIP Municipal enterprises are businesses or services owned by local public authorities that provide services or generate revenue for local communities. One of the earliest municipal enterprises were public power companies. As early as the 1880s, local governments began forming them to provide electricity in areas …

Public Takeover of PG&E: A Radically Common-Sense Proposal

Protesters hold signs as they march to the Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E) headquarters on December 11, 2018, in San Francisco, California. More than two dozen protesters staged a demonstration inside the lobby of the PG&E headquarters to demand that the energy company be held accountable for the Camp Fire that killed 85 people and destroyed over 18,000 structures in …

Power of public banking: Renewables generated 41% of Germany’s electricity in 2017, up from just 6% in 2000; and public banks provided over 72% of the financing for this transition.

The Financial Secret Behind Germany’s Green Energy Revolution The “Green New Deal” endorsed by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D.-N.Y., and more than 40 other House members has been criticized as imposing a too-heavy burden on the rich and upper-middle-class taxpayers who will have to pay for it. However, taxing the rich is not what the Green New Deal resolution proposes. It says funding would …

Take back the grid: Start a Community Ownership of Power Administration (COPA), modeled after the New Deal’s Rural Electrification Administration

This paper, co-written by Jackson Koeppel, executive director of Soulardarity in Highland Park, Michigan, and Liz Veazey, network director of We Own It, proposes a component of the Green New Deal that is explicitly designed to free communities from the unjust power of investor-owned utilities for the sake of not only de-carbonization but in order to transform our economy so it serves everyone. It’s …