ILSR Urges Environmental Protection Agency to Prioritize Grants in Low-Income and Disadvantaged Communities

Date: 13 Dec 2022 | posted in: Energy, Press Release | 0 Facebooktwitterredditmail


For media inquiries, please contact: Reggie Rucker, ILSR Communications Director

MINNEAPOLIS (Dec. 13, 2022) – The Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) joined with Solar United Neighbors (SUN) to submit public comments on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund program design and implementation. The fund is a byproduct of the Inflation Reduction Act and provides competitive funding for financial and technical assistance to enable zero-emission technologies and projects that reduce or avoid greenhouse gas emissions. Katie Kienbaum, Senior Researcher for ILSR’s Energy Democracy Initiative made the following statement on the importance of submitting these comments to the agency:

“Far too often, politicians will pat themselves on the back for passing a bill intended to really change the world and help people, and far too often, the outcomes do not live up to the hype. This happens at the design and implementation phase where it is easy for programs to succumb to inertia, and simply do things the way they have always been. When this happens, communities that have historically been left behind in the wake of progress continue to be left behind, and we can not allow this pattern to continue as a society. 

This is why the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, in our joint comment with Solar United Neighbors, made it clear that the EPA must prioritize grants to entities that plan to provide financial and technical assistance to support the deployment of rooftop solar, community solar farms, local energy storage, and building efficiency upgrades particularly in low-income and disadvantaged communities. The Agency should further prioritize support for locally owned projects as they result in greater economic benefits and more decision-making power for communities. This prioritization is the only way we can begin to make amends for the historical wrongs inflicted on these communities.

“Our comments to the EPA reinforce the continued importance of deconcentrating power in the energy sector. And when we ensure that everyone in our country benefits from this progress, our local communities become healthier, our local economies grow richer, and our democracy grows stronger.” 

Follow ILSR on Twitter for continued commentary on this and other energy issues.



ILSR talked about the implications of the Inflation Reduction Act and its potential to direct funds to communities that have historically been left behind and left out in a recent episode of Local Energy Rules. Listen here.

About the Institute for Local Self-Reliance

The Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ILSR) is a national nonprofit research and educational organization founded in 1974. ILSR has a vision of thriving, diverse, equitable communities. To reach this vision, we build local power to fight corporate control. We believe that democracy can only thrive when economic and political power is widely dispersed. Whether it’s fighting back against the outsize power of monopolies like Amazon or advocating to keep local renewable energy in the community that produced it, ILSR advocates for solutions that harness the power of citizens and communities.

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Katie Kienbaum

Katie is a Researcher with ILSR's Energy Democracy initiative, where she researches and writes about equitable and decentralized clean energy and its impact on communities across the country. Before joining the Energy Democracy initiative, she was a Research Associate with the Community Broadband Networks initiative

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Follow Reggie Rucker:
Reggie Rucker

As Communications Director at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, Reggie develops communications strategies and leads campaigns to build public support for ILSR local power initiatives. Contact Reggie with media inquiries.

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