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Photo: ILSR's Olivia LaVecchia speaking.
Featured Article, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by Olivia LaVecchia | No Comments | Updated on May 9, 2017

Watch: How Cities Can Create a Built Environment Where Local Businesses Thrive

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/watch-how-cities-can-create-a-built-environment-where-local-businesses-thrive/

Cities are changing to become increasingly inhospitable to locally owned businesses. ILSR’s Olivia LaVecchia recently joined with policymakers and advocates at Hopeful Economics, a summit co-hosted by the City of Vancouver and Simon Fraser University, to explore the issue of rising commercial rents and a changing built environment. In this 20-minute talk, Olivia discusses what’s causing the problem, why it matters — and six policy strategies that cities are using to address it. Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Apr 22, 2017

Pie for Broadband Monopolies Video From Public Knowledge

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/pie-for-broadband-monopolies-video-from-public-knowledge/

Public Knowledge recently released a video on changes in the new administration’s FCC policies. One by one, progress made during the last eight years is being sliced up and doled out to the detriment of ISP subscribers. Public Knowledge describes the video like this: This video draws attention to the growing list of giveaways by… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Composting, Waste to Wealth | Written by Brenda Platt | No Comments | Updated on Apr 21, 2017

Make Every Day Earth Day Through Composting

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/earth-day-2017/

“The Nation that destroys its soil destroys itself.”                                            – Franklin D. Roosevelt, 1937 With almost 30% of U.S. cropland eroding above soil tolerance levels – meaning the long-term ability of the soil to sustain… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy | Written by Nick Stumo-Langer | No Comments | Updated on Apr 7, 2017

Video: Transitioning Co-ops Away From Coal

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/video-transitioning-co-ops-away-from-coal/

Karlee Weinmann, Research Associate for the Energy Democracy initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, delivered a presentation in New Orleans, Louisiana on March 28th, 2017 at an event called Decarbonizing the Electric Grid. In her presentation she discussed the untapped potential for rural electric cooperatives to democratically engage with their member-owners, commit heavily to… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Karlee Weinmann | No Comments | Updated on Mar 15, 2017

Video: A Solar Leader Emerges in Rural Iowa

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

It seems counter-intuitive that a conservative farming community in southeastern Iowa is home to some of the most expansive solar generation in the U.S. But that’s exactly what’s happening in the area served by Farmers Electric Cooperative, the rural utility whose enterprising leader, Warren McKenna, saw renewables as a gateway to economic vitality. Last summer,… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Composting, Waste to Wealth | Written by Linda Bilsens | No Comments | Updated on Nov 23, 2016

Video: Compost Happens, But Training Matters​

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

Composting is an age-old practice that still benefits our soils as much today as it did in ancient times. But, what many people may not know is that proper training matters in order to create this “black gold” both safely and effectively. At ILSR’s Composting for Community Project, we’re cultivating a greater awareness of the myriad benefits compost can provide to our soils… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Composting, Waste to Wealth | Written by Linda Bilsens | No Comments | Updated on Nov 18, 2016

Video: Prospect Heights Community Farm Community Composting Feature

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

At the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, we document and promote innovative uses of local power that can be used around the country. Community composting is a way that neighborhoods can take control of what could be waste, such as food scraps, and turn it into wealth, such as healthy soil. Prospect Heights Community Farm in Brooklyn shows… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Nick Stumo-Langer | No Comments | Updated on Oct 28, 2016

Video: Mighty Microgrids – BioCycle REFOR16 Presentation

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/video-mighty-microgrids-biocycle-refor16-presentation/

On October 18th, John Farrell delivered a keynote presentation to the annual gathering of the BioCycle Renewable Energy from Organics Recycling (REFOR16) in Orlando, Florida. In this presentation, Farrell details how microgrids are a realistic piece of our renewable energy future and the intersection of biogas and other renewable energy technologies, such as solar and… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Independent Business | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Sep 7, 2016

Watch: Policy Tools That Enable Local Businesses to Thrive

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/watch-policy-tools-that-enable-local-businesses-to-thrive/

For too long, public policy has rigged the market to favor big corporations and undermine small, locally owned businesses, especially those launched by women and people of color. In this video of a panel session at the CommonBound conference, ILSR’s Stacy Mitchell and others discuss how, now, local businesses and activists across the country are working to change the rules to instead support community enterprises. Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by ILSR Admin | No Comments | Updated on Aug 23, 2016

SandyNet Increases Speeds, Keeps Low Prices

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/sandynet-increases-speeds-keeps-low-prices/

This post was written by ILSR intern, Alex Dangel. On July 4th, Sandy, Oregon’s municipal fiber-optic network, SandyNet, permanently increased the speed of its entry-level Internet package from 100 Megabit per second (Mbps) to 300 Mbps at no additional cost to subscribers. The city announced the speed boost for its $39.95 per month tier in a… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Nick Stumo-Langer | No Comments | Updated on Aug 4, 2016

Video: The Coming of Energy Democracy – Midwest Renewable Energy Fair

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

On June 17, John Farrell delivered a keynote address to the annual Midwest Energy Fair in Custer, Wisconsin. In this presentation, John detailed the growth of renewable energy and how new technologies and smart policies can lead to the downfall of the monopoly electric utility. Thank you to the Midwest Renewable Energy Association for the recording… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Nick Stumo-Langer | No Comments | Updated on Aug 1, 2016

Video: The Shocking Impact of Boring Energy Policy – CommonBound 2016 Conference

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/video-the-shocking-impact-of-boring-energy-policy-commonbound-2016-conference/

On July 9, John Farrell spoke to a group at the CommonBound 2016 Conference. The conference brought hundreds of leaders together to share “visionary strategies for achieving deep systemic change” in areas such as energy policy and economic justice. In this presentation, John detailed the growth of renewable energy and how new technologies and smart… Continue reading

Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jul 28, 2016

Video: Choices Within Monopoly – A Grid of the Future Conversation with Jon Wellinghoff

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/video-choices-within-monopoly-a-grid-of-the-future-conversation-with-jon-wellinghoff/

In November 2015, Jon Wellinghoff, former chair of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, spoke to the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission about the grid of the future. In particular, he addressed the issue of giving customers meaningful choices within a monopoly grid model, present in Minnesota and 34 other states. In the following video, he outlines… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Jun 15, 2016

Ammon’s Model: The Virtual End of Cable Monopolies

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

  The city of Ammon, Idaho, is building the Internet network of the future. Households and businesses can instantly change Internet service providers using a specially-designed innovative portal. This short 20 minute video highlights how the network is saving money, creating competition for broadband services, and creating powerful new public safety applications. We talk with… Continue reading

Article filed under Broadband | Written by ILSR | No Comments | Updated on Jun 8, 2016

Blue Ribbon Panel: The Public and Private Sectors Working Together

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/blue-ribbon-panel-the-public-and-private-sectors-working-together/

Like electricity in the last century, advanced communications services and capabilities can become the drivers and enablers of simultaneous progress in economic development, education, government services, digital equity, and just about everything else that matters most to our communities. This Blue Ribbon Panel explores the challenges of establishing effective partnerships to bring better connectivity to… Continue reading