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Clean energy policies can create jobs, support local business in green markets, and ensure residents have access to jobs created. This brief helps guide you on how to make the most of green investments. After reviewing the City of Oberlin’s energy use and emissions, several policy options and best practices were identified for five energy-using and emission-producing sectors: (1) upgrading the electricity system, (2) greening the commercial and industrial sector to reduce energy costs for firms, (3) enabling anchor institutions in the community to reduce energy use and cost, (4) making the transportation system more sustainable while promoting smart growth and complete street principles, and (5) promote energy savings for Oberlin residents in their homes. By adopting policy options and best practices, communities can spur local investments in the green economy.
What would have to happen for the city of Memphis to reduce poverty by 10% within 10 years – lowering it from 27% to 17% – and fundamentally shift economic opportunity and well-being for low-income residents? Today, there are 180,741 Memphis residents living below the poverty line ($23,550 for a family of four). Achieving a 10 percentage point reduction means moving 64,000 individuals out of poverty. It will require a combination of more and better jobs; better access to areas of job growth; lower household expenses for energy, transportation and water; and opportunities for economic advancement that are built on public safety, education, health, supportive services, and affordable housing. This report outlines key improvements that must be made in jobs, resource efficiency, transportation, and social services that Memphis must make to achieve this goal.
A diverse group of neighbors and businesspeople from the portion of Milwaukee Avenue between the Western Avenue and California Avenue CTA stations met on November 28, 2007 at the Center for Neighborhood Technology. Their mission was to identify a community vision for the corridor. The area is under significant development pressure and there is active debate about what form of future development is desirable. The community meeting on November 28th was convened to help the alderman and the city understand the community’s concerns and priorities. A facilitated process was used to collect information and develop areas of consensus where possible.
Climate change impacts do not affect all communities in the same way. Frontline communities including low-income communities, communities of color, indigenous peoples and tribal nations, and immigrant communities suffer first and worst from climate disasters. This is due to decades of underinvestment and unjust systems that have left these communities with disproportionately high costs for energy, transportation and basic necessities, limited access to public services, high levels of poverty and pollution, and outdated and weak critical infrastructure. Climate change exacerbates these injustices that frontline communities face, making climate adaptation and community resilience essential priorities. Strategies to tackle climate change must prioritize the most impacted and least resourced communities. California must develop programs and policies that truly center social equity in climate adaptation efforts and uplift frontline communities so that they do not simply “bounce back” to the unjust status quo after climate disasters strike but are able to “bounce forward” as healthy, resilient and sustainable communities. This report provides specific recommendations on how to operationalize social equity in the goals, process, implementation and analysis of policies and grant programs focused on climate adaptation. The report includes examples from existing policies and grant programs to illustrate what the recommendations look like in practice.
A policy on obligations of developers and contractors to seek local employees, service providers and businesses to meet their needs.
An ordinance requiring contracting companies to maintain, to the greatest extent possible, a workforce composed of 40% qualified Newark residents.
Inclusive contracting refers to the process of creating the environment for businesses owned by people of color and/or women to participate in a governmental procurement and contracting process. Inclusive business participation in local government procurement and contracting is an important source of income and jobs in communities of color and helps to strengthen community and business partnerships. It strengthens communities within the jurisdiction both economically and socially. It also allows governments to express their values with the dollars that they spend. Procurement is one of the more important local government functions - valued at $23.4 billion annually, for instance, in the case of New York City. Although procurement and contracting has become more formalized and codified over time, it is not necessarily more equitable.
Equitable mobility pilot projects should center the voices usually left out of decision-making through a community-driven process. Equitable mobility pilot projects must also address entrenched injustices by providing the following benefits to low-income communities of color in a way that is meaningful, direct, and assured: (1) Increased access to affordable, efficient, safe, reliable mobility options; (2) Reduced air pollution; (3) Enhanced economic opportunities. Historically, transportation investments and plans have not met the mobility needs of low-income people of color because decisions have been made behind closed doors without community input. This has resulted in these communities suffering from disproportionate levels of transportation-related pollution and longer and less reliable commutes. A lack of good mobility options limits low-income people\'s ability to raise themselves out of poverty. Today, low-income people of color often face financial, technological, physical, or cultural, barriers to accessing shared mobility services (i.e. bikeshare, scooter share, Uber, carshare, etc.). Some of these mobility services have also be shown to compete with public transit ridership and utilize unfair labor practices, both of which harm people of color.
Climate change grant programs can provide multiple benefits, including improved air quality, lower electricity costs, improved health outcomes, and green job opportunities. However, these benefits often fail to reach low-income communities of color—even though these communities tend to live in the most polluted neighborhoods and stand to greatly benefit from the improved environmental and economic conditions that clean energy resources can provide. Climate change grant programs represent one way to level the playing field and make clean energy benefits reach all communities, but they must be designed intentionally with equity. Grant programs must clearly define their social equity goals and develop evaluation criteria to track success. The analysis should indicate the strengths and areas for improvement in meeting equity goals and should be used to inform the direction of the program moving forward. Programs must plan proactively to collect the data needed to evaluate their success or shortcomings in meeting social equity goals.
A fact sheet summarizing local hiring policy for San Francisco.