10 August 2020 | 7 minutes.

Building resilient communities through municipal climate action

Divia Hobson
Strategic Analyst, Joule Assets Europe

Divia Hobson, Strategic Analyst, Joule Assets Europe

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed that things we often regard as static can, in fact, change fairly quickly under certain circumstances. Over the past months, societies have had to reassess responses to the crisis that closely mirror the fight to combat climate change, showing the crucial role social cohesion plays – how shared values that shape the very experiences and success of communities can prompt drastic, long-standing changes.

Holistic systems change needs to be built from both the top-down as well as bottom-up. Communities are uniquely positioned to and gather people to act, build resilience and impact lives, which is why they are critical for climate action. Private-public partnerships with municipalities are furthering the role of communities in building climate resilience for cleaner energy that has both economic and societal benefits for residents that are also good for businesses.

Community Choice Aggregation for municipalities pools local demand to broker cheaper energy supply contracts from renewables.

Empowering communities

Supporting communities to lead their own just transition is key for ensuring holistic systems change. An example of the work being done on the ground, Joule Community Power is partnering with communities in New York state to guide municipalities and residents towards reduced energy costs through local energy independence and clean energy. Joule’s expertise in designing and implementing new consumer-protective energy supply contracts is instrumental in creating Community Choice Aggregation (CCA) for municipalities that pool local demand to broker cheaper energy supply contracts from renewables. The program can be further paired with community solar to save residents and small businesses additional money by subscribing to a local solar farm, generating clean, renewable energy that feeds into the existing utility grid. The participants are allocated a share of the solar farm, earning them solar credits and reducing their annual electricity bills.

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