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RE-AMP February 2020: Climate Policy from Frontline Communities, RE-AMP Elections 2020, Funding Opportunities, and More!

Greetings RE-AMPers!

2020 is a Leap Year and a bonus day couldn’t come at a better time because there are a lot of exciting things happening around the Network! Jump to the Connections section to learn about our newest RE-AMP member, Chicago Food Policy Action Council, the 100% Network’s newly published policy document, and initial details about the 2020 Annual Meeting. Hop down to the Collective Strategy section to try out the Yale Climate Program’s Climate Opinion Fact Sheet Generator and get updates on Action Teams and the RE-AMP Steering Committee. In Capacity Building, find out more about RE-AMP’s continued work around the 2020 elections, RE-AMP’s Rapid Response Fund, and the Just Transition Fund’s 2020 grant cycle. Lastly, check out job postings from around the Network and upcoming events!

Have a story to share? Connect with Network Director of Community Management, Sarah Shanahan, today at sarah@reamp.org.

Connections

Welcome our newest members to the RE-AMP Network!

Chicago Food Policy Action Council, Full Member

Primary contact: Rodger Cooley | rcooley@chicagofoodpolicy.com 

“I’m so thrilled to have Chicago Food Policy Action Council as a member of the Network. During our interview, Rodger mentioned he wanted to dig further into the intersection of climate, agriculture and food, which is a growing interest in our Network so I won’t be surprised if we see an Action Team emerge around the topic!” – Sarah Ann Shanahan, Director of Community Management.

Why did Chicago Food Policy Action Council join the Network?

“CFPAC operates as a network model providing support through “backbone” organizing, communications, coordination, collaborative fundraising, advocacy, mini-grants, and events to and with Chicago communities of color and many allies in Chicago, Illinois, regionally, and nationally. We see a strong opportunity to amplify our work and networks by joining RE-AMP and supporting bringing in food system and agriculture focused climate change and carbon reduction focused partners to collaborate across RE-AMP’s states and existing partners.”- Rodger Cooley, Executive Director

Andrew Butts, Individual Member

andrewdbutts@gmail.com 

“I’m excited that Andrew joined as an individual member because he is so committed to the work. He doesn’t intend to stay an individual member because once his organization, The Green Neighbor Challenge, has their C3 status he intends to join as either a Full or Ally member. Andrew had previously worked for Energy Transition Lab and has valued being part of the Network so much that he wanted to remain part of it during the transition.” – Sarah Ann Shanahan, Director of Community Management

Why did Andrew join the Network?

“As someone working to create a non-profit dedicated to helping ordinary people sign up for green energy and get involved in local action, and as an organizer with Science for the People both locally and on the National Steering Committee, I’m interested in building connections, messaging, and action around a shared framework for change. Neither policy nor science produce justice unless the people involved fight for it. So I’m here to fight for it and coordinate our efforts.” – Andrew Butts

Comprehensive Building Blocks for a Regenerative and Just 100% Policy

 The 100% Network has released the Comprehensive Building Blocks for a Regenerative and Just 100% Policy written by black, indigenous, communities of color and frontline experts who are from member-groups of the 100% Network. This is a groundbreaking, comprehensive, and innovative policy document created for the purpose of deepening the discussion and creating policy outcomes that center impacted communities and move us further toward our shared vision.

Read the 100% Network’s blog post here.

Download the Building Blocks along with their statement with quotes from some of the authors.

As Aiko Schaefer, Director of the 100% Network, writes, “This was truly a collaborative project and we are so grateful for the leadership and contribution of each and every individual and organization that made this possible. This document is a fundamental contribution to envisioning equitable, renewable energy policies. Now that it is complete, we need you to ensure it is used and disseminated widely!”

Check out the Toolkit that has been created with sample social media posts and an email for sharing with your networks and look at the 100% Network’s website for upcoming webinars that will focus on each building block.

 2020 Annual Meeting

This year’s Annual Meeting will be in Detroit, Michigan at the Michigan Outdoor Adventure Center on June 30 – July 1 – July 2. We’ve got a great Host and Planning Committee who will be working to ensure that this year’s meeting is wildly successful!

Our Host Committee:

  • Kathryn Savoie, Ecology Center

  • Meredith Gillies, Clean Water Action

  • Jackson Koeppel, Soulardarity

Our Planning Committee:

  • Rachel Myslivy, Climate + Energy Project

  • Seth Nowak, Individual Member

  • Rachael Belz, Ohio Citizen Action

  • Ashwat Narayanan, OurStreets MPLS

  • Yesenia Rivera, Solar United Neighbors

  • Melissa Gavin, RE-AMP Network

Together, we will develop an excellent program that connects us locally, builds relationships, creates space for collective strategy setting, and helps deepen your own capacity.  See you in Detroit!

Collective Strategy

Yale Program on Climate Change: Climate Opinion Fact Sheet Generator

We wanted to flag for everyone that our friends at the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication have released a nifty tool to generate state, district, or county specific factsheets on a number of climate change related opinions. The tool is here: https://climatecommunication.yale.edu/visualizations-data/factsheets/

Action Team Highlights

Update from the Steering Committee

The RE-AMP Steering Committee met for our February call on February 18th. After fully wrapping up finances for 2019, RE-AMP was successful in staying within the budget originally approved by the Steering Committee.

Steering Committee members discussed the ‘Guiding Principles for Equitable Deep Decarbonization.’ These five principles were developed by a committee of RE-AMP members, out of discussions that were launched at the 2018 Equitable Deep Decarbonization Summit in Chicago. Recognizing that how we get to our goal is as important as the goal itself, RE-AMP members began to develop guiding principles for updating the benchmarks/pathways in RE-AMP’s Equitable Deep Decarbonization framework at the 2018 summit. Over the course of the last year and half, the committee has met regularly to think, discuss, debate, and ultimately crystallize the principles. The Guiding Principles are available for member review now and will be included in the member survey in March to gauge member support.

Steering Committee members and staff discussed the Network workplan goals for 2020 with a focus on fine-tuning these goals and measuring success. The goals for 2020 are:

  • Goal #1: RE-AMP members develop collective strategy and work collaboratively toward inclusive, equitable climate solutions
  • Goal #2: Raise RE-AMP’s profile as the network known for setting collective strategy and working collaboratively toward inclusive, equitable climate solutions
  • Goal #3: Begin  work on engagement in Midwest elections in 2020 and 2022 focused on training volunteer leaders; digital and earned media; and a convening of climate champions in Milwaukee in July 2020.
  • Goal #4: Improve RE-AMP Network internal processes, systems and capacity
  • Goal #5: Ensure RE-AMP is adequately resourced to effectively carry out its work

Steering Committee members then took a closer look at how RE-AMP can more fully support regional collaboration opportunities within and beyond the Network. Members and staff especially want to cultivate conversations and action around the following topics:

  • Equitable electrification of buildings
  • No new fossil fuels
  • Elections
  • Transportation
  • Agriculture and climate change
  • Energy democracy

The next Steering Committee monthly call will take place on March 17 and the next in-person meeting of the Steering Committee will be in April in Chicago.

Capacity Building

RE-AMP + 2020 Elections: Building the Ground Game and Media Messaging

Volunteer Leadership Trainings

As many of you know, the RE-AMP Steering Committee set a network priority of using the 2020 elections as an opportunity to build power and shape the narrative around climate change. As part of our work, the RE-AMP Organizing Hub is working with members to host trainings focused on volunteer leadership development.

The first of these trainings is happening on March 28th in East St. Louis, Illinois with ACES 4 Youth. ACES 4 Youth is a grassroots organization working with young people in the African American community of Metro East. In addition to their role on the state climate table, ACES 4 Youth is a leader with the IL Downstate Caucus, representing the voices of communities outside of Chicago in statewide policy discussions.

RE-AMP Organizing Hub Director, Sean Carroll, is co-leading the training with ACES 4 Youth’s Executive Director, Gregory Norris, who also serves on the RE-AMP Steering Committee. The day will cover key leadership and team-building skills for increasing voter turnout, including goal-setting, recruitment, and story-telling. In the 2016 Presidential election, voter turnout was down across the country, and turnout dropped particularly in RE-AMP states. Conversely, in the 2018 midterm elections, voter turnout increased across the country and turnout was particularly high in RE-AMP states.* (source:  U.S. Elections Project. See full data set on the 2020 Elections Commons page). In addition to driving turnout in key impacted communities, these trainings will build power for RE-AMP members by equipping a core group of grassroots leaders with the organizing skills to carry this work forward for the long-term.

Over the next couple of months, the Organizing Hub is hosting trainings with members across the region, including with the Ohio Equity Team and the Climate + Energy Project. Contact Sean Carroll, sean@reamp.org, to find out more.

New Regional Media Coordinator

We are excited to announce that Tracy Sabetta will be taking on the role of Regional Media Coordinator for The RE-AMP Network’s nonpartisan election work! In this position, Tracy will help drive regional collaboration and develop resources for members through earned and social media.

As part of our 2020 nonpartisan educational election work, network members will be collaborating to take action over earned and social media, including:

  • Generating earned media that lifts up the stories of impacted communities
  • Organizing coordinated grassroots social media actions from voters to educate candidates
  • Coordinating across multiple states during national opportunities like Earth Day and presidential candidate debates

The network will also be providing members with a toolbox of earned and social media resources including templates of sample tweets, letters-to-the-editor, and infographics to be customized by members as well as training opportunities to build key communications skills.

As Regional Media Coordinator, Tracy will be leading this effort. Tracy has been a RE-AMP member, representing the National Wildlife Federation in the Network, for over 10 years. She is a founding partner of Initiative Consulting, a government relations and communications consulting firm in Columbus, OH. For the last three years, she has coordinated the communications work of the Ohio Energy Table by creating and implementing social media campaigns, executing press conferences, and directing media advocacy activities around state energy policy issues.

Contact Tracy, tsabetta@initiativeohio.com, if you are interested in learning more about the media resources that will be offered through the RE-AMP Network or to talk more about ways our coordinated efforts can support your organization’s goals.

See the 2020 Elections page on the RE-AMP Commons for details on all of the Network’s tactics.

RE-AMP Funding Opportunity: Clean Energy and Energy Efficiency Rapid Response Fund

We are interested in supporting non-profit organizations that encounter unexpected needs or changed circumstances in the course of ongoing campaigns or multi-state initiatives. Grants from the fund will be prioritized for needs that require rapid turnaround. The fund is not intended to cover core operating budgets or to address shortfalls in annual fundraising efforts.  The fund may only be used for non-lobbying expenses of 501(c)(3) organizations.

Key Areas of Interest

  • Defend against emerging attempts to weaken or eliminate existing Energy Efficiency Resource Standards (EERS), Renewable Portfolio Standards (RPS) or other utility sector clean energy policies.
  • Take advantage of unexpected opportunities to expand or strengthen those policies.
  • Intervene in rate cases that present new opportunities to incentivize energy efficiency or renewable energy including vigorously opposing increases in fixed charges.

For more information go to the Commons —-> Activity ——> Funding—–> Rapid Response

Just Transition Fund

In 2020, the Just Transition Fund will hold two, distinct grantmaking cycles that align with Fund’s high-level, organizational goals and strategies. Proposals will be accepted from organizations working to create economic opportunity and strengthen local economies through community economic development strategies, workforce programs, policy, and long-term community transition planning. Competitive proposals include projects, located in the Fund’s current geographic priority areas, that are scalable, replicable, and have national or regional significance.

Cycle 1: Community Economic and Workforce Development
Projects considered during this cycle will stimulate entrepreneurship, connect rural and urban markets, and develop human capital. Examples of eligible projects include entrepreneurial training programs, wrap-around workforce training programs, food corridors, etc.

Project outcomes include: creating jobs, training workers and entrepreneurs, developing entrepreneurial projects, establishing corporate partnerships and/or remote work opportunities, and increased job readiness of workers.

Timeline

  • Early March: RFP issued
  • Early April: Step 1 LOI applications due
  • Early June: Full proposals due (when invited)
  • August: Decisions announced

Cycle 2: Policy and Planning
Projects considered during this cycle will advance key federal, state, and local transition-related policies OR support nascent transition planning efforts, where work to address closures and engage diverse stakeholders is just starting. Examples of eligible policy projects include policies that create state funds, advocate for reclamation, and support energy efficiency. Examples of eligible planning projects include community transition planning processes, capacity building, and access to experts.

Policy project outcomes include: influencing key policy decision-makers, increased public support for policies, changes in public attitudes, and the introduction of meaningful legislation.

Planning project outcomes include: increased capacity of stakeholders, transition roadmaps/plans produced, and an increased knowledge and awareness within transitioning a community.

Timeline

  • Early August: RFP issued
  • Late August: Step 1 LOI applications due
  • Late October: Full proposals due (when invited)
  • December: Decisions announced

Process
The Fund will issue the request for proposal (RFP) and Step 1 LOI application link via email for each cycle. Each applicant must first submit a Step 1 LOI application. The JTF team will then review inquiries and invite a small number of applicants to submit a full proposal. If your organization is not invited to submit a proposal in Cycle 1, you can reapply in the second cycle of the year.

How to Receive Our RFP 
If you are on JTF’s  RFP list, you may have received this information directly to your email. If you are a member of a network and you think your organization would be a good fit for our grantmaking program, please submit this online form.

If you have questions about your project, or you need help determining the cycle for which your project will be most competitive, please contact JTF’s Partnerships Director, Mandy Bridenhagen at abridenhagen@justtransitionfund.org.

Jobs

Events

Level Two and Level Three Action Team Applications Due | February 28

The Break Room: A Virtual Lunch Break with the RE-AMP Network | February 28

RE-AMP Steering Committee Meeting | March 17

Faith Communities for Equitable Solar Action Team | March 19

Blueprint for Energy Democracy Action Team Webinar | March 25

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