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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

Amazon’s Chattanooga Distribution Center is Expanding

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/amazons-chattanooga-distribution-center-expanding

Prior to Chattanooga’s gigabit announcement, Amazon had no considered that region as a location for the distribution center they would looking to put in the southeastern U.S. But they saw the … Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

Community Broadband Research Position Available at ILSR

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/community-broadband-research-position-available-ilsr

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR), a small non-profit based in Minneapolis seeks a full-time employee to conduct public policy research in broadband/telecommunications. The position … Continue reading

Cars at Tesla Dealership
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

How to Sell Electric Cars

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/how-sell-electric-cars/

Maggie Koerth-Baker wrote an excellent essay on the value of electric vehicles (a rebuttal to the idea that Americans hate EVs), but this paragraph could stand alone as the “reason to buy an electric car.”

3) Screw you, electric cars are fun to drive. 

Look, I know this is purely subjective. But “not fun,” Johnson? Seriously? Have you gotten a chance to floor the accelerator on a Nissan Leaf on a stretch of empty one-way street? Because I have. And it’s hella fun. Electric motors don’t shift gears the way internal combustion engines do. Which means, when you accelerate, you just keep accelerating, without the slow-down that accompanies each shift up. Which means you’re slammed back in your seat like you’re riding a motherf***ing rocket ship to the moon. Only it’s silent. How is that not awesome? If I buy an electric car, I am going to get sooooo many speeding tickets**. I think that’s pretty much the all-American definition of a fun car.

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Rickreall_Post_Office_1
Article filed under The Public Good, The Public Good News | Written by David Morris | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2012

How Obama Can Guarantee a Second Term

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/how-obama-can-guarantee-a-second-term/

Let me suggest a sure fire way Barack Obama can win a second term. Stand in the doorway of a post office scheduled for closing and declare, “Not on my watch.” He will be standing with tens of millions of Americans who are rising up to defend our must trusted and ubiquitous public institution. Last… Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 12, 2012

Legislation Alert: Washington Considers Community Broadband Bill

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/legislation-alert-washington-considers-community-broadband-bill

Last year we noted that a bill to expand local authority to invest in publicly owned broadband networks would return in 2012. HB 1711 is in Committee and causing a bit of a stir. “A bit of a … Continue reading

Advanced Electric Meter
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Jan 12, 2012

How Electricity Pricing Can Boost Distributed Solar – Part 1

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/how-electricity-pricing-can-boost-distributed-solar-part-1-0/

Note: This is a revision of the same post from last week, with an updated time-of-use pricing plan from Los Angeles. What if electricity cost more when the sun was shining? Many utilities are using new electronic “smart meters” to adjust the price of electricity as often as every 15 minutes, to reflect supply and… Continue reading

House with rooftop solar panels
Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 7 Comments | Updated on Jan 12, 2012

Solar Grid Parity 101

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/solar-grid-parity-101/

Solar grid parity is considered the tipping point for solar power, when installing solar power will cost less than buying electricity from the grid.  It’s also a tipping point in the electricity system, when millions of Americans can choose energy production and self-reliance over dependence on their electric utility. But this simple concept conceals a… Continue reading

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Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Jan 11, 2012

Democratic energy policy means strong public support for renewables

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://ilsr.org/democratic-energy-policy-means-strong-public-support-renewables/

Conducted by market research institute Forsa on behalf of municipal utilities in Germany, the survey found that 61 percent of Germans are willing to pay more for their power if the extra cost helps ramp up the share of renewables. Public acceptance even extends to acceptance of wind turbines “in my backyard”; 54 percent of those surveyed said they would find it “good” or “very good” if a wind turbine were set up nearby.

That’s the German feed-in tariff at work…

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Article filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 10, 2012

Minnesota PUC Information Meeting on Recent FCC Reforms on Jan 12

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.muninetworks.org/content/minnesota-puc-information-meeting-recent-fcc-reforms-jan-12

The Minnesota Public Utilities Commission is hosting an informational meeting on Thursday, January 12, at 1:00. For those who cannot make it in person, it will be webcast here.
The PDF announc… Continue reading