Toward a Climate Justice Energy Platform: Democratizing Our Energy Future

Local Clean Energy Alliance, Center for Social Inclusion

Author +
Al Weinrub, Anthony Giancatarino

Year: 2015

In response to the increasingly serious impacts of climate change, people around the world are attempting to wrest control of energy resources from the powerful institutions that are hell-bent on driving humanity to the brink of extinction.

The growing popular movement to address the world’s climate and economic crisis is widespread, and takes many forms. Yet all reflect an effort by concerned citizens to exercise more control over energy decisions and to self-determine a sustainable, life-supporting energy future.

While this effort is expressed in the movement to confront and stop increasingly extreme fossil-fuel extraction, shipment, and consumption, and to transition to a 100% renewable energy system, its most powerful expression is in advocating for an alternative to the corporate energy establishment’s centralized renewable energy model. That alternative is a decentralized, democratized renewable energy model, one aligned with a climate justice strategy for addressing our current climate and economic crisis.

This new report from the Local Clean Energy Alliance and the Center for Social Inclusion lays out a vision for a democratized energy future that shifts the ownership of energy systems from corporations to communities. The authors propose a decentralized renewable energy platform, guided by principles of healthy communities, family-sustaining livelihoods, workforce development, and six other justice and sustainability values. The report outlines governance, finance, labor, and investment strategies to support this transition and provides a compendium of model policies and programs.

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Table of Contents

Vision of a Democratized Energy Future
Energy and Climate Justice  
A Strategy for Confronting the Corporate Energy Agenda
Community Power
Centralized Renewable Energy
Decentralized Renewable Energy
Principles of Democratized Energy Development
A Platform to Advance Energy Democracy
Platform Issues
What, More Precisely, is Community-Based Energy?
How to Finance Community-Based Renewable Resource Development?
How to Address the Concerns of Labor Regarding an Energy Transition?
Criteria for Climate Justice Energy Policies and Programs
Labor and the Economy
Model Policies and Programs
Just Transition Zones
Snapshots of Climate Justice Energy Policy and Program Advocacy
A Proposed Climate Justice Energy Platform