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Featured Article filed under Broadband, Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Karlee Weinmann | No Comments | Updated on Mar 2, 2017

Arkansas Utility Leads on Energy, Broadband

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

This article was co-written with ILSR’s Community Broadband Networks initiative research associate, Hannah Trostle, and this piece is cross-posted on MuniNetworks.org. Ouachita Electric Cooperative, nestled deep in south-central Arkansas, is an unlikely innovator in a pair of industries struggling to adapt to shifting market dynamics: electricity and broadband. Despite rising demand for energy efficiency and… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Karlee Weinmann | No Comments | Updated on Oct 18, 2016

Co-op Power Puts Localist Spin on Clean Energy Economy

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/co-op-power-puts-localist-spin-on-clean-energy-economy/

New England is well known for pacesetter legislation that has made it a clean power leader, but the region also boasts a showpiece example of community-scale coordination — separate from the action in statehouses and city halls — that taps into renewables to buoy local economies. This is part of a series released in October… Continue reading

Featured Article filed under Broadband | Written by ILSR | No Comments | Updated on Jul 2, 2016

Liberty and the Farm: Internet Access

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/liberty-and-the-farm-internet-access/

The 4th of July invites us to celebrate the accomplishments of our country. But, 23 million people in rural areas remain without high-speed Internet access. Rural areas cannot stay unconnected. Agriculture has become a high-tech endeavor, and high-speed Internet access is necessary. Cooperatives, those democratic institutions formed by rural farmers years ago, are becoming an… Continue reading

Featured Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on May 23, 2016

Being Black Still a Barrier to Rural Cooperative Board Membership

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/being-black-still-a-barrier-to-rural-cooperative-board-membership/

In 1984, the New York Times ran a story highlighting the almost universally white boards of directors among 300 Southern electric cooperatives serving populations with thousands of African American member-owners: According to Oleta G. Fitzgerald, a staff lawyer with the [Southern Regional Council], a survey of 300 cooperatives in Southern states showed no more than… Continue reading

Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Matt Grimley | No Comments | Updated on Jan 13, 2016

Just How Democratic are Rural Electric Cooperatives?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/just-how-democratic-are-rural-electric-cooperatives/

Randy Wilson knew you had to start somewhere. Knocking on doors and hanging around retail store parking lots, he and volunteers from the citizen group Kentuckians for the Commonwealth collected signatures. After weeks of holding out clipboards, they collected the more than 500 signatures needed to run for the board of the Jackson Energy Cooperative… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Sep 28, 2015

Did FERC Just Smash the Biggest Roadblock to Clean, Local Power for Electric Co-ops?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/did-ferc-just-smash-the-biggest-roadblock-to-clean-local-power-for-electric-co-ops/

Because they only sell 11% of the country’s electricity and they largely overlap politically conservative areas, electric cooperatives are often the forgotten stepchild of the clean energy movement. But with 7 of the top 10 dirtiest power systems (as measured by carbon intensity) and territory that overlaps some of the best renewable energy resources in the country,… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy | Written by ILSR | No Comments | Updated on Jul 30, 2015

Democratic Energy Media Roundup – week of July 27, 2015

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/democratic-energy-media-roundup-week-of-july-27-2015/

This week in Democratic Energy: Activists rally against Massachusetts Net Metering caps New York’s energy vision inspires others Minnesota city puts solar on the map Featured Stories Questions to ponder as the future electric grid takes shape by Quentin Karpilow, Green Biz You can read ILSR’s submission here!   Regulations putting a limit on solar… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on May 7, 2015

Beyond Utility 2.0: Part 3 “The Future”

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/beyond-utility-2-0-part-3-the-future/

Unfortunately for utilities, new technology and commercial opportunities in the coming years will only increase the threat to the 1.0 business model. Solar energy is growing exponentially as costs have fallen 28% per year from 2009-2013, and electricity from rooftops is approaching or passing parity with utility prices.63 This is the third of four parts of… Continue reading

Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Apr 22, 2015

Beyond Utility 2.0: Part 1 “A Prelude to the Future”

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/beyond-utility-2-0-part-1-prelude/

The U.S. electricity system is undergoing the biggest change in its 130-­year history. The scale of electricity generation is rapidly shrinking, from coal and nuclear power plants that can power a million homes to solar and wind power plants that power a few to a few hundred nearby homes. Electricity demand has leveled off, so… Continue reading

Featured Article filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 14, 2015

Can Other Cities Match Georgetown’s Low-Cost Switch to 100% Wind and Sun?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at https://ilsr.org/can-other-cities-match-georgetowns-low-cost-switch-to-100-wind-and-sun/

This is probably not the first place you’ve read about Georgetown, TX, the town of 55,000 that will be getting the equivalent of 100% of its electricity from renewable energy by 2017. But few articles hit upon the two key reasons Georgetown was able to make this move when so many other cities with abundant… Continue reading