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About Matt Grimley

Matt is a research associate with ILSR’s Democratic Energy Initiative, where he publishes articles and reports on local, renewable energy solutions.

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Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Jul 21, 2016

What if…Your Electric Utility Was a Benefit Corporation?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/what-if-your-electric-utility-was-a-benefit-corporation/

The misunderstandings that from time to time occur between communities and the managers of electric-lighting companies will, to my mind, disappear entirely if the relations between the two are correctly founded on the basis of public control, with corresponding protection to the corporations operating this industry. More than 100 years ago, standing in front of… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Jul 7, 2016

Mountains Beyond Mountains: How Green Mountain Power Became More Than An Electric Utility – Episode 38 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/mountains-beyond-mountains-how-green-mountain-power-became-more-than-an-electric-utility-episode-38-of-local-energy-rules-podcast/

“We just need to become the Ben and Jerry’s of the utility world!” So said Mary Powell (pictured left), CEO and president of Green Mountain Power, as she announced in 2014 that her electric utility had just earned B Corp certification, making it one of more than 1,700 companies in the world committed to rigorous… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on May 2, 2016

In St. Peter, MN, A Solar Fee Blossoms

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/in-st-peter-mn-a-solar-fee-blossoms/

St. Peter, Minn., home to 11 thousand people, is nestled within the verdant hills of the Minnesota River Valley. The town was originally intended to be the state capital of Minnesota, until a legislator named “Jolly” Joe Rolette nabbed the bill and hid it from the governor’s awaiting signature. Unflappable, the city would play its own part… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Apr 28, 2016

Northeast Iowa’s Winneshiek Energy District Shows How Communities Can Capture Local Energy Dollars – Episode 35 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/northeast-iowas-winneshiek-energy-district-shows-how-communities-can-capture-local-energy-dollars-episode-35-of-local-energy-rules/

In the follow-up from our new community-owned renewable energy report, Beyond Sharing: How Communities Can Take Ownership of Renewable Power, we are releasing the second in a series of Local Energy Rules podcasts that informed the writing of this report. Andy Johnson works with the soil. When younger, he served in Peace Corps in Central America for three… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Apr 20, 2016

Sunshine and Ownership: A Cooperative Solar Garden Blooms in North Minneapolis – Episode 34 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/sunshine-and-ownership-a-cooperative-solar-garden-blooms-in-north-minneapolis-episode-34-of-local-energy-rules/

In anticipation of our new community-owned renewable energy report, Beyond Sharing: How Communities Can Take Ownership of Renewable Power, we are releasing the first in a series of Local Energy Rules podcasts that informed the writing of this report. When people pay their electric bill to an investor-owned utility such as Minnesota’s Xcel Energy, they are… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Apr 7, 2016

Freeing Electric Cooperatives from Fossil Fuel Serfdom? – Episode 33 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/freeing-electric-cooperatives-from-fossil-fuel-serfdom-episode-33-of-local-energy-rules/

Electric cooperatives arose from New Deal legislation that provided government-backed low-interest loans to bring electricity to rural areas that for-profit companies wouldn’t serve in the 1930s. They were engines of the rural economy. But today they face unique challenges, including a disproportionate reliance on coal-fired power, often purchased on decades-long contracts. Additionally, even though rural… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Apr 6, 2016

A Kansas Electric Cooperative Offers Energy Savings with $0 Down – Episode 32 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/a-kansas-electric-cooperative-offers-energy-savings-with-0-down-episode-32-of-local-energy-rules/

It’s not sexy. But it can make you warmer. It can even make you cooler. On-bill financing provides loans for energy efficiency improvements through the local utility company, paid back with energy savings on monthly electric (or gas) bills. And it’s a powerful tool for simplifying the financing for energy savings, and for making home… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Apr 5, 2016

Members Reviving Atlanta Electric Co-op After CEO Takes Millions – Episode 31 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/members-reviving-atlanta-electric-co-op-after-ceo-takes-millions-episode-31-of-local-energy-rules/

Former CEO Dwight Brown (pictured right) did a number on the Cobb Electric Membership Corporation (EMC). Cobb EMC serves around 175,000 member-owners just outside of Atlanta, Ga., and is one of 900 member-owned electric cooperatives in the United States. From the late 1990s on, the co-op’s members lost nearly $400 million dollars to Brown’s for-profit… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Mar 3, 2016

Microgrids and Regulation with Chris Villarreal – Episode 30 of Local Energy Rules Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/podcast-microgrids-and-regulation-with-chris-villarreal/

With the release of ILSR’s new report, “Mighty Microgrids,” ILSR is releasing two podcasts with the developers and regulators of microgrids in the United States. This is the second podcast. In 2014, Chris Villarreal helped write the white paper, Microgrids: A Regulatory Perspective. As a regulatory analyst with the California Public Utilities Commission, he outlined… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Mar 3, 2016

Report: Mighty Microgrids

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/report-mighty-microgrids/

Communities all over the country are finding ways to break the macro barriers to microgrids. As we flip from a top-down to bottom-up grid management structure, major policy barriers must be lifted in order to expand energy democracy to customers and producers. DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT   Executive Summary The electric grid is no longer… Continue reading