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Property managers often struggle to get technically sound energy efficiency and renewable energy projects approved for financial reasons. Sometimes the split incentive embedded in leases makes projects uneconomic for the building owner. Other times, property managers simply cannot get internal capital allocated to clean energy efficiency projects or cannot gain approval for the use of external financing. For commercial real estate property owners, Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) financing can remove the typical barriers to the implementation of energy efficiency improvements.
Community leaders care most about an issue when their own constituents are involved. Having local property owners voice an interest in PACE is a great way to get the attention of a government board. Form partnerships with stakeholders in the community through chambers of commerce or homeowner associations. Make things easy for constituents by providing template letters of support and contact information for elected officials.
Social Equity means all people can attain the resources and opportunities that improve their quality of life and enable them to reach their full potential. Addressing the history of inequities in the systems we work in and their on-going impacts in our communities is a shared responsibility. Social equity also means that those affected by poverty, communities of color, and historically marginalized communities have leadership and influence in decision making processes, planning, and policy-making. Together we can leverage our collective resources to create communities of opportunity.
This scorecard was created by Twin Cities, MN community leaders to ensure that the principles and practices of equitable development, environmental justice, and affordability are applied in all communities as they plan for economic development and wealth creation that benefits everyone.
Viewing transit-oriented development (TOD) through an equity lens through every step along the process is essential. eTOD elevates and prioritizes community voice whether in efforts to avoid or stop displacement of community residents, local businesses, and culture or to ensure that transit is affordable, reliable and accessible. It supports investments and policies that close the socioeconomic gaps between communities in which the majority of residents are people of color and those that are majority white.
Major economic development projects and infrastructure investment can present both tremendous opportunities and significant threats for communities and residents. Using a community benefits approach, as a local government official you have powerful tools available to ensure that these projects provide the greatest social, economic and environmental benefits while also not harming surrounding neighborhoods. In short, community benefits are assets available through economic development that meet real community needs. Examples include community access to living wage jobs, affordable housing, health and community services and open space.
The principles and practices of equitable development, environmental justice, and affordability are guides for all communities: suburban cities, rural communities and urban neighborhoods as they plan and implement economic development that benefits everyone. This equitable development tool will help guide development projects to 1) become economically vibrant with creative new affordable housing options that complement transit development 2) embrace the important concepts of local placemaking, livability, accessibility, walkability 3) increase the number of local stakeholders planning development projects. Working in partnership; government and low income, communities of color, people living with disabilities and seniors can ensure equitable development in our region.
\"Ohioans spend a large amount of money on energy. In 2010, we spent $45 billion, nearly 10 percent of our state’s gross domestic product. Nearly half of those energy dollars (or more than $20 billion) was spent to fuel cars, trucks, and buses, and nearly all of which left the state or country in order to import oil. Ohio can reduce its dependence on imported oil by promoting electric vehicles (EVs) and buses, as well as passenger and freight rail. Several Ohio communities, including Oberlin, Cincinnati, Cleveland, and Cuyahoga Falls are using municipal aggregation and municipal utility power to increase use of local clean energy, thus keeping energy dollars local.\"
Building electrification means eliminating use of fossil fuels for functions like heating and cooking and replacing gas appliances with alternatives that use electricity. In California, 25 percent of our greenhouse gas emissions come from the buildings we live and work in. As our electric grid gets steadily cleaner, building electrification can play a big role in fighting climate change. Electrifying our homes also has major health benefits. Burning gas releases nitrogen oxides and particulates, which can have serious health consequences. While building electrification has promising benefits for residents and for the state, it must be pursued equitably— ensuring that environmental and social justice communities can benefit, rather than being left with polluting and increasingly expensive gas appliances. It will require intentional policymaking and a planned transition for environmental and social justice communities to gain access to the major benefits of electrification, including cleaner air, healthier homes, good jobs and empowered workers, and greater access to affordable clean energy and energy efficiency to reduce monthly energy bills.
To evaluate initial success of California\\\'s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund program in assisting underserved communities tackle climate change,, The Greenlining Institute examined 10 projects: nine already funded and one that is eligible for funding. These case studies provide an early snapshot of the Fund’s impact and suggest ways the program might be improved. These 10 projects alone will provide over 2,000 solar power systems for low- income families generating nearly six megawatts of clean power, plant 2,250 trees in disadvantaged communities, provide 252 homes permanently-affordable to lower income households, create over 400 jobs and replace 600 old, highly polluting cars and trucks with clean electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles.