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Article, Resource filed under General | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Nov 18, 2015

Building Local Equity: ILSR’s Impact in 2015

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/building-local-equity-ilsrs-impact-in-2015/

ILSR’s forward-thinking, bottom-up solutions have never been more needed.   Please help us expand our impact in 2016 by making an online tax-deductible donation to ILSR. Since our founding, building equity has been a core value and aim of our work. The word “equity” originally meant fairness or equality. Today the term has degenerated into a… Continue reading

SandyNet Goes Gig
Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Nov 9, 2015

SandyNet Goes Gig: A Model for Anytown, USA

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/sandynet-goes-gig-a-model-for-anytown-usa/

Many of the most beautiful communities in the United States are in remote areas where incumbent cable and telephone companies have decided not to offer modern, high-quality Internet connectivity. Sandy, Ore., is one of them. Some 10,000 people live there among the lush green forests and beautiful vistas of the “Gateway to Mount Hood,” 25… Continue reading

Hawai'i at the Energy Crossroads
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Oct 6, 2015

REPORT: Hawai’i at the Energy Crossroads

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

UNDER THE SPECTER OF A MAINLAND UTILITY TAKEOVER, ISLANDERS MUST CHOOSE BETWEEN A LEGACY OF LARGE CENTRALIZED POWER OR A BURGEONING NETWORK OF DISTRIBUTED ENERGY Matt Grimley and John Farrell October 2015 DOWNLOAD THE FULL REPORT Executive Summary On the one hand: Sky-high electricity prices. A 20th century electricity system burning fuel oil and controlled… Continue reading

GIg_U Shield
Article filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Jul 30, 2015

New Handbook on Next Generation Connectivity From Gig.U

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/new-handbook-on-next-generation-connectivity-from-gig-u-2/

Gig.U, a collaboration of more than 30 universities across the country has just released The Next Generation Network Connectivity Handbook: A guide for Community Leaders Seeking Affordable, Abundant Bandwidth. The handbook, published in association with the Benton Foundation, is available as a PDF online. One of the authors, Blair Levin, has been a guest several… Continue reading

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Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Jul 22, 2015

Comcast’s Big Gig Rip-Off

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/comcasts-big-gig-rip-off-2/

For some five years now, many have been talking about gigabit Internet access speeds. After arguing for years that no one needed higher capacity connections, Comcast has finally unveiled its new fiber optic option. And as Tech Dirt notes, it is marketed as being twice as fast but costs 4x as much (even more in… Continue reading

5 gigs municipal solar
Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jun 1, 2015

Public Rooftop Revolution Report

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/public-rooftop-revolution/

There are a lot of stories on residential rooftop solar but few if any on what cities are doing to make themselves energy self-reliant by using their own buildings and lands to generate power. In Public Rooftop Revolution, ILSR estimates that mid-sized cities could install as much as 5,000 megawatts of solar—as much as one-quarter… Continue reading

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Article, ILSR Press Room, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by Olivia LaVecchia | No Comments | Updated on Feb 11, 2015

Buoyed by Public Support, Independent Businesses Report Strong Sales Growth, National Survey Finds

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/2015-independent-business-survey-independent-businesses-report-strong-sales-growth/

Independent businesses saw strong sales growth in 2014 as more consumers embraced the “buy local” movement and ditched big companies in favor of supporting local retailers and small-scale producers, according to a large national survey released today. Continue reading

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Featured Article, Resource filed under General | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Dec 29, 2014

Building Community, Strengthening Economies: ILSR’s 2014 Annual Report

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/annual-report-2014/

As we confront the daunting challenges of a severely compromised climate, crippling inequality, and a failing federal government, ILSR’s forward-thinking, bottom-up solutions have never been more needed.  We need your support today. Help us fight against the concentration of corporate power, the loss of control of our local economies and government, and the growing threats… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Dec 12, 2014

“$364 billion up for grabs” – A Video preview of Energy Democracy

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/video-energy-democracy/

2014 marked the year that solar energy, energy storage and electric vehicles – hallmarks of a decentralized electricity grid – got big enough to threaten the electric utilities, exposing their 100-year-old business model as out-of-date. In nearly 20 states, utilities are fighting back, proposing new fees and rules to minimize the competition from customer generated… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Dec 9, 2014

New Report: Beyond Utility 2.0 to Energy Democracy

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

Exciting changes are on the horizon for our century-old utility structure as solar power, energy storage, and electric vehicles open new avenues for utility customers to produce their own power and control their energy use. Utilities are scrambling to remain relevant in this technological firestorm, and energy wonks are envisioning a new business model –… Continue reading

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Featured Article, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | 2 Comments | Updated on Nov 20, 2014

New Report: Walmart’s Dirty Energy Secret

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/walmarts-dirty-energy-secret/

Walmart talks a lot of talk about its renewable energy initiatives, but a new ILSR report finds that all that hype is just slick greenwashing hiding the company’s massive coal consumption. In this first-of-its-kind analysis, ILSR calculated that Walmart is one of the nation’s largest users of coal-fired electricity. Despite pledging nearly a decade ago to shift to 100 percent renewable energy, Walmart today derives only 3 percent of its U.S. electricity from its renewable energy projects — far less than many small businesses and competing chains. Several national environmental leaders — including Michael Brune of Sierra Club, Bill McKibben of 350.org, and Jeremy Hays of Green For All — joined ILSR in releasing the study and calling for change. Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Oct 20, 2014

Report: North Dakota’s Pharmacy Ownership Law Leads to Better Pharmacy Care

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

What a difference local ownership makes. Under a forward-thinking 1963 law, North Dakota does not allow chains to operate pharmacies. Instead of Walgreens and Walmart pharmacies, North Dakotans go to 171 independent and locally owned pharmacies across the state for their prescriptions. That may soon change though: Walmart is bankrolling — to the tune of $2.7 million — a campaign to pass a ballot measure on November 4th that would overturn the law. That’s more per person that Obama spent in the 2012 general election. Weighing into the debate, ILSR this week released a data-driven study that finds that North Dakotans receive significantly better pharmacy care by every measure, from some of the lowest drug prices in the nation to unparalleled access, particularly in rural areas. Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Oct 13, 2014

Correcting Community Fiber Fallacies: The Reality of Lafayette’s Gigabit Network

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/fiber-fallacies-lusfiber/

In just the last year the Lafayette Utility System (LUS) gigabit network has attracted 1300 high-tech jobs. Chairman Wheeler praises the network for doing what many communities hope to do, but cannot because of state laws limiting municipal broadband networks. Critics are desperate to discredit the network, using false statements and misinformation. The Reason Foundation released a paper by… Continue reading

Photo: Walmart Store
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States, Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | 2 Comments | Updated on Oct 9, 2014

Walton Family Undermining Rooftop Solar, ILSR Report Finds

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

The Walton family — majority owners of Walmart — are impeding America’s transition to a clean energy future, a new study by ILSR finds. At a time when more than 500,000 households and businesses are generating their own solar electricity, and the U.S. solar industry is employing 143,000 people, the Waltons are funding nearly two dozen organizations working to roll back renewable energy policies, while a Walton-owned company is pushing for regulations aimed at hindering the growth of rooftop solar power. Continue reading

tenKsolar solar and Minneapolis skyline
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | 1 Comment | Updated on Oct 6, 2014

REPORT: An Alternative Grid Model for Minneapolis

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

This short report shares the results of advanced electricity system modeling for the city of Minneapolis, revealing an opportunity to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions at a comparable cost of power and to dramatically boost renewable energy production at a modestly higher price. Download the report Executive Summary An advanced technical and economic model of… Continue reading