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While partisanship remains strong among the rural electorate, more than one-third (37%) of rural voters appear "swingable" in future elections, depending on resonant policy proposals and messaging. Three messaging points — lowering prices; bringing good-paying jobs to local communities; and a populist message focused on corporate greed — received such broad support that they rivaled voters’ agreement on core values like family and freedom. Read additional analysis in the Daily Yonder's coverage.
In Cleveland, OH, the nonprofit Cleveland Owns is incubating the state's first community-owned solar developer, Cleveland Solar Cooperative, which was the subject of a recent case study funded by the Climate Advocacy Lab.
On the call, organizers shared lessons learned, their motivations to keep at this work, and best practices for groups around the country working to build community-owned solar arrays. The insights shared in this webinar will inform advocates working to start community-owned solar projects, provide practical tips for groups building relationships with the goal of taking action for climate justice, and introduce attendees to a national network of organizations that support projects like this around the country.
In June 2019, the nonprofit Cleveland Owns convened The Lakewood Community Solar Fellowship, a free leadership development program focused on bringing resident-owned community solar to Lakewood, Ohio. A group of 7 residents took part, meeting for a few hours every Sunday in the basement of the local public library. The goal? Form a solar cooperative to fight climate change and build toward climate justice.
When the Fellowship started, most of these residents were strangers, but together they would go on to form the Cleveland Solar Cooperative (CSC), Ohio’s first community-owned cooperative solar developer. How did this happen?
This case study details how Cleveland Owns helped convene the Cleveland Solar Cooperative (CSC), Ohio's first community-owned cooperative solar developer. It explores how Cleveland Owns developed the foundation for energy democracy efforts in their city; the key moments, challenges, and successes they and allies faced as they formed the cooperative; and an offering of tools and resources for other communities seeking to replicate their model.
Among these resources and insights are:
- An account of Cleveland Owns' organizing principles and group norms
- An honest reflection of challenges they faced, such as developing mutual trust and the technical expertise necessary to navigate the local energy market
- The rationale behind the cooperative business model underlying the CSC
- The CSC's process of developing bylaws, governance structures, and technical infrastructure for themselves
- Their ethos of self-assessment that drives their evolution as a collective
- A tool kit of organizing materials and resources on energy democracy and solar development
In this webinar, the Lab team is joined by the Regulatory Assistance Project to explore recommendations from the new report Energy Infrastructure: Sources of Inequities and Policy Solutions for Improving Community Health and Wellbeing.
In addition to the report, participants also learn from advocates across the country fighting for an equitable clean energy future. Contributing speakers shared their reflections and lessons learned from a variety of perspectives on what it takes to achieve energy equity, including how they're financing low-income solar, how they're growing solar through state-level policy, and how to work in strong coalition.
Contributing speakers include: Donna Brutkoski, Communications Associate, Regulatory Assistance Project; Yesenia Rivera, Director of Energy Equity and Inclusion, Solar United Neighbors; and Jacqueline Hutchinson, Vice President of Operations, People’s Community Action Corporation.
Different parts of the country see various kinds of extreme weather as most concerning, perceptions which are largely in line with actual major disasters that have occurred in those regions. This report provides concern profiles for the 18 largest states, drawing on survey data from 2018 and 2019. Over half of Americans see such extreme weather events posting a high or moderate risk to their community in the coming decade, and two thirds see a climate link to US weather (though only a third think climate affects our weather "a lot").
A majority of Ohio voters (64%) oppose HB 6 and want to see it repealed. Support for repeal increases 12 points as voters hear more information.
6 out of 10 voters agree that climate change is an urgent threat.
Voters support the pillars of a repeal and replacement plan, including investigating FirstEnergy, a zero-carbon energy future, and an equity focused move to clean energy.
7 out of 10 voters say they are likely to sign a petition to place HB6 on the ballot for repeal if the Legislature does not repeal it themselves.
Energy Infrastructure: Sources of Inequities and Policy Solutions for Improving Community Health and Wellbeing
In a new report produced with the support of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Synapse Energy Economics, RAP and Community Action Partnership take an in-depth look at the disparate impacts of electric and natural gas infrastructure on economic, social, and health outcomes — and consider how to ensure that a clean-energy future is a more equitable future.
3 in 4 respondents said that it is a high priority to cut air pollution from energy production that has negative public health effects, including a slight majority of Republicans and 90% of Democrats. 7 in 10 said it is a high priority to reduce greenhouse gases from energy production, including just under half of Republicans and 91% of Democrats. After a briefing and assessment of arguments pro and con, 7 in 10 approved of the US participating in the Paris Climate Agreement.
75% of millennials say they would be more likely to vote for a candidate who wants to transition the U.S. from fossil fuels to clean energy, but 44% of millennials do not see a difference between Clinton and Trump on this issue. 44% also prefer Clinton’s views on transitioning to clean energy; only 12% prefer Trump’s.