American consumers and farmers have been hungering for a new Farm Bill. After much fanfare and three years of partisan fighting, the House and Senate finally passed a comprehensive, bipartisan five-year Farm Bill, which President Obama signed into law last Friday. The Farm Bill is nearly 1000 pages long, so we at CSI picked out three things you may have missed that could have a big impact on communities, particularly communities of color.Read full post >
“We need to act.” That was the message President Obama delivered to all of us in his speech at Georgetown University yesterday. As an expectant father, I need no convincing. I dream of family camping trips. Of showing my daughter the forests of the snowcapped Rockies. Walking with her along the cliffs of the Pacific coast and the sandy beaches of the Atlantic coast. I live in awe of the planet we call home.
But the blanket we are wrapping around our planet, warming it, will change all this. Intense forest fires. Rising sea levels. Drought. Climate change will imperil my daughter’s future. And she will be luckier than some. We have a growing racial climate gap.Read full post >
“The Faces of Climate Change” is the theme of Earth Day this year. And it’s fitting given the impact that climate change had in 2012 for many of us. 2012 proved loud and clear that climate change knows no boundaries – it affects all of us. And climate change does not work in isolation; it is a challenge in every aspect of our lives. It threatens the viability of our food system, as our farmers must deal with extreme droughts or floods that wipe out our fruits and vegetables. It destroys our homes as we witnessed in the unprecedented forest fires in Colorado. And it destroys our infrastructure from broadband and transit lines to the power grid as we witnessed the raw power unleashed by Superstorm Sandy in NYC last November.Read full post >
In this case study, we examine the Broadway Triangle Community Coalition (BTCC) Plan to develop vacant land for renewable energy, green jobs, energy efficiency and affordable housing for a multi-racial constituency. Communities are at the frontline of our national challenges, be it jobs, housing or climate change, and often see opportunities to solve multiple challenges holistically, as does the Broadway Triangle Coalition. But while communities of color are generating new ideas and multiple efforts to build a more inclusive and green future we, as a nation, are not yet discussing policies to support these endeavors.Read full post >
This past Sunday, August 19th, CSI President Maya Wiley appeared on Up with Chris Hayes on MSNBC to talk about voter ID, stimulus, and poverty.Read full post >
Communities of color have long been environmental activists and can be innovators in a new renewable energy economy. CSI’s case study analyzes efforts by community of color groups in Boston, Massachusetts to develop a community-owned energy service cooperative that would weatherize homes, provide jobs and lower emissions.Read full post >
Leveraging the resilience, innovation, and resourcefulness of Black farmers in the South, the Black Family Land Trust (BFLT) is building a foundation for achieving a sustainable solution that can work for all farmers – the utilization of farmland to create clean, renewable energy while maintaining food production. This can help farmers save their land while fueling the nation’s energy and food demands. In collaboration with the BFLT’s work to organize and support Black farmers in the South, the Center for Social Inclusion introduces: Renewable Energy Opportunities in the Rural South, a resource for the BFLT and its constituents. This packet provides an overview of what renewable energy potential exists in the rural South, summarizes grant opportunities, and identifies technical assistance resources that can help farmers navigate the process and build a strategy towards developing a renewable energy future. The packet also identifies barriers that Black farmers face, particularly in Alabama, Mississippi, and South Carolina, while offering short-term and long-term recommendations for the Black Family Land Trust.Read full post >
Today, Earth Day empowers thousands of individuals and communities who are searching for solutions to our energy needs, while continuing to respect and honor the planet that we call home.
But all of us could do more to support these people.Read full post >