2020 Strategic Convening: National Energy Democracy Project Sets 2021 Directions

(01/2021) This past November 20-22, thirty plus organizations, from east to west and north to south, gathered virtually for the second annual Strategic Convening of the Energy Democracy Project. The Project’s Affiliated Organizations consist mainly of local frontline organizations engaged in a broad range of energy democracy efforts in their respective communities.

Speaking of the accomplishments of the convening, Jessica Tovar, of the Local Clean Energy Alliance, said, “We developed stronger alignment around what is happening in our communities and how it connects together to accelerate a national energy democracy movement.”

The gathering served as a trusted space for sharing and learning, discovering resources, training staff, refining strategies, and planning collective actions to advance energy democracy. It helped the Energy Democracy Project meet the following convening goals:

  • Developing stronger relationships across Affiliated Organizations doing energy democracy work and help build the personal sharing and trust needed to advance the movement.
  • Sharing expertise and knowledge about how to advance energy democracy
  • Beginning to develop a common strategy (and tactics) for building the energy democracy movement 
  • Planning for collective actions that will advance energy democracy in 2021
The Convening also bolstered the two existing initiatives of the Project: the development of a Resource Hub (to connect organizations to existing energy democracy resources) and a Utility Justice Playbook (to strengthen organizing against private utilities).
In addition, it highlighted a number of collaborative initiatives for 2021 to advance energy democracy. These included right-to-energy issues like a moratorium of pandemic utility shutoffs and cancellation of pandemic-caused utility debt and an effort to infuse energy democracy principles into Green New Deal legislation and other federal climate policies.
Based on the Strategic Convening, these and other issues are on the agenda of the Energy Democracy Project for 2021. As an Affiliated Organization of the project, the Local Clean Energy Alliance will do its best to advance these efforts.