A Thank You to the League of Women Voters

The League of Women Voters has done the work that is vital to our democracy in helping community members to get to know their candidates and hear them discuss their positions on local issues, receiving praise from the StarTribune.

LWV organized high quality non-partisan candidate forums in all contested city council elections in Minneapolis. All 14 forums were held in front of a live audience, live-streamed and recorded for future viewing and seen by over 10,000 people. Community Power partnered with LWV Minneapolis to provide local energy & climate related questions and to help spread the word of the forums.


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East Phillips Environmental Justice: Protest at Smith Foundry + Roof Depot Agreement Finalized

A surprise inspection by the EPA in May revealed that Smith Iron Foundry failed to control harmful airborne substances in one of the most polluted neighborhoods in the state.  See this same story covered in the Star Tribune. 


Smith Foundry has polluted harmful airborne substances far in excess of the law for at least five years.

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Minnesota Clean Heat Coalition Launches Oct 24th

While Minnesota continues to make progress in lowering greenhouse gas emissions that come from the electricity production sector, emissions from heating buildings continue to rise. Clean Heat Minnesota hopes to change that.


Click here or on image below to watch the 1-minute video of the Oct 24th launch of this new statewide, multiracial coalition representing Minnesotans who want clean, affordable energy to power heating, cooking, and appliances.

See additional coverage of this announcement in the Sahan Journal.

Clean Heat Minnesota is co-led by Fresh Energy along with COPAL , a nonprofit dedicated to improving the quality of life in the Latino Community in Minnesota and Citizens Utility Board of Minnesota, an advocacy nonprofit for utility consumers which is leading the effort to develop a long-term system planning process for Minnesota's biggest natural gas utilities.

Dozens speak for Minneapolis Climate Equity Plan at City Budget Hearings

A heartfelt thank you to the 12 that showed up to speak for the Minneapolis Climate Equity Plan at the Oct 25th city budget public hearing and 11 showed up for the Nov 1st hearing (and others who touched on the topic)!

On Oct 19th Minneapolis formally approved the promised $10 million and has offered to prioritize weatherizing older homes in lower income households. See the story covered in Minnpost and the Star Tribune

 (Community Power speaking at the Nov 1st hearing)

Along with support for frontline city workers and co-enforcement of workers' rights, intelligently implementing the decade-long roadmap to achieve ambitious climate goals was the most frequently evoked topic that city council members heard from the community. 


For some specifics, Community Power submitted written comments which can be found by scrolling to the end of this document,  asking for 1) a networked geothermal feasibility study & pilot, 2) equitable workforce development guidelines, 3) transparent oversight of the climate legacy initiative funds, and 4) echoing fellow commenters suggestions for home weatherization. 

To hear some of the 2-minute speeches click on the links below: 

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Community Power Chosen as Buildings Upgrade Prize Phase 1 Winner

The U.S. Department of Energy Building Technologies Office has announced the Buildings Upgrade Prize (Buildings UP) Phase 1 winners, and we were among the teams chosen to move on to Phase 2. Buildings UP offers more than $22 million in cash prizes and technical assistance over several phases to accelerate the deployment of equitable, widespread energy efficiency and efficient building electrification upgrades. Our team joins 45 total teams chosen as Phase 1 winners in one of two pathways: Equity-Centered Innovation and Open Innovation. We submitted our concept to the Equity-Centered Innovation Pathway pathway. Phase 1 winners in the Equity-Centered Innovation Pathway each receive $400,000 in cash prizes. Phase 1 winners in the Open Innovation Pathway each receive $200,000 in cash prizes. All teams will also receive technical assistance to create a pilot plan from their concepts in Phase 2. 

Community Power will partner with Cooperative Energy Futures to upgrade 2,000-plus Minnesota homes by creating access to upfront capital, data integration, and providing community-trusted support through a navigator position.

“We received an unprecedented number of submissions to this prize, demonstrating nationwide enthusiasm for developing solutions that drive scalable building energy efficiency and electrification upgrades across the country,” said Jeff Marootian, principal deputy assistant secretary for energy efficiency and renewable energy (EERE). “No two buildings have the same upgrade needs due to variations in size, use, age, location, and more. Phase 1 winning teams developed robust initiative concepts that center equity and will accelerate energy upgrades in a wide range of buildings. We look forward to seeing these Phase 1 concepts take shape in the next phase of this prize.”


Thirty-nine teams in the Equity-Centered Innovation Pathway were selected to move onto Phase 2 of the prize for their concepts to deliver scalable and replicable upgrades to buildings in disadvantaged communities, low- and moderate-income households, and underserved commercial, nonprofit, and public buildings.


We look forward to beginning the planning process and bringing our initiative to life! Learn more about the prize, our concept, and the winning teams: https://www.energy.gov/eere/articles/doe-awards-22-million-advance-equitable-energy-efficiency-and-electrification