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Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Mar 16, 2015

Can an Old Utility (dog) Learn New Tricks?

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/utility-dog-learn-tricks/

Arnie Arnesen interviewed ILSR’s Director of Democratic Energy John Farrell on WNHN’s The Attitude last week, seeking an answer to this question: can we expect electric utilities to embrace the energy sources of the future, like solar? Electric Utilities Play by the (Old) Rules Arnie and John discussed the hesitance of utilities to embrace innovation… Continue reading

santa fe sunset - flickr Drriss & Marrionn
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jan 23, 2015

How to Maximize Municipal Energy Options for Santa Fe (Public Radio Broadcast)

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/talking-municipal-energy-options-santa-fe-public-radio/

Santa Fe, NM, is battling with its electric utility, PNM, over the utility’s continued heavy reliance on large-scale fossil fuel power plants in a state with some of the best sun and wind resources in the country. Director of Democratic Energy John Farrell joined Santa Fe City Councilor Patti Bushee to discuss options for Santa… Continue reading

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Featured Article, Resource filed under The Public Good | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Jan 8, 2015

“The Secret Side of Global Trade” – David Morris, International Forum on Globalization

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/the-secret-side-global-trade-david-morris-international-forum-globalization/

David Morris spoke at Riverside Church for the International Forum on Globalization in 1995 about local self-reliance and global trade. His words still ring true today. You can listen to the audio from the speech below, download it in your podcast player, or watch it on our YouTube channel. David Morris is co-founder of the Institute and… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Christopher | No Comments | Updated on Jan 6, 2015

Public or Private Ownership? Community Broadband Bits Episode 132

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/public-private-ownership-community-broadband-bits-episode-132/

Ever since the last time I spoke with Blair Levin on Episode 37, I have wanted to have him back for a friendly discussion about public or private ownership of next generation networks. Though Blair and I entirely agree that local governments should be free to decide locally whether a community broadband network investment is… Continue reading

Web developers protested the FCC's proposed Net Neutrality regulations.
Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Rebecca Toews | No Comments | Updated on Nov 13, 2014

MPR’s “Daily Circuit” and KCRW’s “To the Point” invite Chris Mitchell for net neutrality conversation

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/mprs-daily-circuit-kcrws-to-point-invite-chris-mitchell-net-neutrality-conversation/

“The FCC should be extremely wary of any arguments that claim paid prioritization or other discriminatory practices are necessary to increase investment in next-generation networks.” — ILSR, July 18, 2014 For months the FCC has considered comments from the public as it examines network neutrality. There have been more than 3 million submissions; a vast… Continue reading

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Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Aug 13, 2014

A Solar Ownership Comeback? John Farrell Talks with Arnie Arnesen on WNHN

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/solar-ownership-comeback-john-farrell-talks-arnie-arnesen-wnhn/

A month ago I wrote about the potential for a comeback for solar ownership (instead of leasing) as the economics and options for ownership continue to improve. Yesterday I discussed this trend in depth on “The Attitude” with Arnie Arnesen on WNHN. Subscribe to the podcast here, or listen by clicking the player below:   Continue reading

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Featured Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Jun 5, 2014

Same Price, More Renewables. San Diego’s Fight for Community Choice – Episode 23 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/price-renewables-san-diegos-fight-community-choice-episode-23-local-energy-rules/

“San Diego and its community choice energy district would be able to offer a diverse energy mix with all of the solar, biodiesel, biogas, and energy storage resources that we have in San Diego.  A product that is price competitive and yet at the same time would strive for and achieve a higher level of… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on May 15, 2014

A Deep Dive on Value of Solar and the Future of Solar Energy – Episode 22 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/deep-dive-solar-future-solar-energy-episode-22-local-energy-rules/

“Utility regulation and rates is a contact sport,” says Karl Rabago, and that makes the implementation of a new “value of solar” policy complex. Will distributed solar grow better with a transparent, value-based contract price? How does it differ from net metering? Is Minnesota’s law a precedent to follow? Prepare yourself for a deep dive… Continue reading

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Resource filed under Banking, Independent Business | Written by Stacy Mitchell | No Comments | Updated on May 2, 2014

Stacy Mitchell on Local Bites Podcast (Audio)

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/stacy-mitchell-local-bites-podcast-audio/

ILSR’s Stacy Mitchell is interviewed on the Local Bites Podcast. She lays out the evidence against the growing consolidation of economic power in the hands of a few global corporations and exposes the policy decisions that have led us down this path. She highlights several promising initiatives from the growing localization movement, and outlines the key components of a ‘localist policy agenda’. Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on May 1, 2014

One City Utility is Carbon Neutral, Today – Episode 21 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/city-utility-carbon-neutral-today-episode-21-local-energy-rules/

It’s one thing to own your utility and have a commitment to renewable energy, but it’s another thing to deliver. The municipal utility in Palo Alto, CA, set an ambitious target of 33% renewable energy by 2015 and to ultimately deliver a carbon neutral electricity supply. They will reach 48% renewable power in 2017 and… Continue reading

KC Doyle
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 17, 2014

The Power of the Collective Energy Purchasing – Episode 20 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/power-of-collective-energy-purchasing-episode-20-local-energy-rules/

“We can’t do it as an individual, But four hundred communities aggregating and asking for local wind power and solar power – that’s really powerful.” Oak Park, IL, is one of hundreds of Illinois towns using their authority to buy electricity in bulk on behalf of its residential and small business customers. So far, most… Continue reading

Dawn Weisz, Marin Clean Energy
Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Apr 3, 2014

The Leading Community Energy Aggregator – Episode 19 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/leading-community-energy-aggregator-episode-19-local-energy-rules/

Community choice aggregation describes a situation where a town can become the bulk buyer of electricity on behalf of its residential and small business customers. Such local aggregations serve about 5% of utility customers in Illinois, Ohio, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and California, but it’s Marin Clean Energy in California that stands above the crowd for… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Mar 21, 2014

A Perfect Storm for Renewables – Episode 18 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/perfect-storm-renewables-episode-18-local-energy-rules/

“We have a perfect storm for renewables,” says Jan TenBruggencate, second-term board member of the Kauai Island Utility Cooperative. The Hawaiian utility, made local when the investor-owned utility left the business a decade ago, is surging toward 40% renewable energy in the next year, with a third of that total from customer-generated solar. Half its… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Energy, Energy Self-Reliant States | Written by John Farrell | No Comments | Updated on Mar 6, 2014

How Can Communities Leverage a Better Energy Future? – Episode 17 of Local Energy Rules

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/communities-leverage-energy-future-episode-17-local-energy-rules/

How can a community take control of its energy future from a 100-year monopoly electric utility?  Citizens of Boulder, CO, are testing answers to that question, trying to discover how a single city can do more for its economy and the environment with more power over its energy system. At the core of their efforts… Continue reading

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Article, Resource filed under Broadband | Written by Lisa Gonzalez | No Comments | Updated on Feb 26, 2014

Barry Lynn Talks Monopolies on the Community Broadband Bits Podcast

The content that follows was originally published on the Institute for Local Self-Reliance website at http://www.ilsr.org/barry-lynn-talks-monopolies/

In Episode #83 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast, we bring you Barry Lynn to talk about the direct and indirect threats that make market consolidation dangerous. There are many threats from monopolies and many are much more dangerous to a free society than higher prices. Lynn is a senior fellow at the New America Foundation and… Continue reading