Green Economy

Parks and People

Parks and People leads greening initiatives such as massive land reclamation, native reforestation, watershed restoration, public health and fitness programming, urban agriculture, and green job training across the District of Columbia to help revitalize once forgotten communities.  It also runs the DC Green Corps, which provides a city-wide gateway to 50 different green career tracks.  As of summer 2014, the program graduated 150 people. Read more about Parks and People...

DC Greenworks

Established in 2000, DC Greenworks is a nonprofit that empowers residents and neighborhood groups to restore and preserve their communities by serving as a green roof advocate and educator, and as a one-stop shop for Low Impact Development (LID) consultation, design, and installation.  As of 2015, it is credited with installing over 70 green roofs and 3,200 rain barrels. Read more about DC Greenworks...

Power To The People: Toward Democratic Control of Electricity Generation

Trade Unions for Energy Democracy

This provocative whitepaper explores how public and cooperative ownership in the energy sector can accelerate a transition to sustainable energy while creating democratized wealth, using the historical experience of rural electrification in the United States as a key starting point to imagine a green future.

Greentopia/Green Vision

An initiative launched by Greentopia—a nonprofit focused on green education, advocacy and sustainable development in downtown Rochester—Green Vision aims to clean and beautify city lots while providing employment, education and work experience to inner city youth.  Once a lot is cleared, Green Vision youth cultivate a garden on the site and sell harvested flowers, enabling participants to gain experience in running a small business in addition to horticulture and landscaping skills.  In 2014, 16 at-risk youth from Rochester’s JOSANA neighborhood participated in the program. Read more about Greentopia/Green Vision...

Environment Now

Established in 2009, Environment Now is a project-based green careers program that helps prepare San Francisco residents for jobs in green industries.  Program participants work on city green projects, with a focus on neighborhoods in need. Because many participants come from underserved communities, they can connect with traditionally hard-to-reach audiences and boost community participation in the City’s environmental initiatives. The program currently has 20 trainees. Read more about Environment Now...

Nebraska’s Community-Owned Electricity System

In Nebraska, 121 publicly-owned utilities, 10 cooperatives, and 30 public power districts provide electricity to a population of around 1.8 million people.

In the United States, there is one state, and only one state, where every single resident and business receives electricity from a community-owned institution rather than a for-profit corporation. It is not a famously liberal state like Vermont or Massachusetts. Rather, it is conservative Nebraska, with its two Republican Senators and two (out of three) Republican members of Congress, that has embraced the complete socialization of energy distribution.

Advantage Local: Why Local Energy Ownership Matters

John Farrell

John Farrell, senior researcher for the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, compares the economic and environmental impact of locally owned utilities against absentee-owned utilities. Finding that local ownership not only encourages a more rapid adoption of renewable sources of energy but also generates local economic activity and jobs, Farrell recommends that states create incentives for locally owned projects. Farrell cites examples of successful community ownership models in Minnesota, Washington, and Colorado and argues for the cessation of current state and federal tax incentives that privilege commercially owned projects.

Angels by the River

Speth, Gus

In his new memoir, Angels by the River, Gus Speth, Democracy Collaborative Senior Fellow and Co-Chair of the Next System Project, describes his personal journey to become one of our nation’s most prominent environmental leaders and activists. Speth, who is also a co-founder of the Natural Resource Defense Council and founder of the World Resources Institute, protests America’s deep social and income inequalities and urges a transition to a new environmentalism, one predicated on an environmentally and socially restorative economy. 

Milwaukee Community Service Corps

Established in 1991, Milwaukee Community Service Corps (MCSC) is a nonprofit vocational training organization providing employment, education, and life skills training to Milwaukee’s at-risk youth. As part of its program, it engages youth in projects that improve the Milwaukee community and conserve the environment, such as beach clean-ups and home rehabilitations. Read more about Milwaukee Community Service Corps...

Milwaukee Area Workforce Funding Alliance

The Milwaukee Area Workforce Funding Alliance is a consortium of 27 funders, including philanthropic agencies, public agencies and employers, that have aligned and pooled over $16 million to create employment opportunities that benefit area businesses needing skilled workers and individuals seeking good jobs with family-supporting wages. It supports several “green” programs, which aim to train low-income Milwaukee residents in alternative fuel auto technology, energy-efficient construction, and urban forestry. Read more about Milwaukee Area Workforce Funding Alliance...

Global Water Center

The Global Water Center is a water research and business accelerator center created by the Water Council, a Milwaukee-based nonprofit membership association. Designed to help address local and global water quality, technology, and policy issues and catalyze new businesses in the water industry, the Center includes research facilities for universities, space for existing water-related companies, and incubator space for new, emerging water-related companies. Read more about Global Water Center...

Weaving the Community Resilience and New Economy Movement

Marissa Mommaerts , Ken White and Ben Roberts
Post Carbon Institute

The Post Carbon Institute and Collective Conversations interviewed 18 leaders, including Democracy Collaborative Communications Coordinator John Duda, for a new report on the possibilities for a new, more equitable and democratized economy. Building off of conversations from the Community Resilience and New Economy Network, the collected interviews help to connect different social movements and present creative solutions and alternatives to our current extractive economy. Full transcripts of each interview are also available online.

LA CleanTech Incubator (LACI)

Founded by the City of Los Angeles to accelerate the commercialization of clean technologies, LACI is a nonprofit that offers flexible office space, CEO coaching and mentoring, and access to a network of experts and capital. Incubated companies operate in a range of sectors including Smart Grid infrastructure, energy efficiency, energy storage, electric transportation, and materials science.  Working closely with area universities, businesses, governments, capital markets and utilities, LACI aims to foster innovation and grow the region’s green economy.  Over the next five years, LACI expects to help create 1,600 direct and indirect jobs.