Energy Democracy for All

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Energy Democracy is local people having control of how their electricity is produced and distributed to ensure everyone has access to affordable and clean power.

Two decades into the 21st century, advances in solar panels, battery storage, modernized electric grids and other technologies are revolutionizing how our electricity can be produced and distributed. But large utility companies with monopoly control over the market — such as Duke Energy and Dominion Energy — are keeping us locked into using increasingly expensive polluting fuels like coal and fracked gas to generate our electricity.

At the same time, the increasing impacts of global climate change, including dangerous heat waves and severe storms, are taking a toll on countless communities, but especially disadvantaged communities and communities of color. And monopoly utility companies charge ever higher rates while they knowingly continue to worsen the climate crisis.

But a movement toward Energy Democracy is growing across Appalachia and throughout the country. Local individuals and groups are standing up to demand a seat at the table with decision makers to ensure we transition to a system that is affordable and fair, provides community wealth and jobs, and is built on clean, renewable energy.

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Why Energy Democracy?

Learn how monopoly control and a focus on profit have locked us in a pattern of polluting fossil fuels and ever higher rates

Tell Congress: Support new power plant regulations

Our legislators need to support the EPA’s new rules to slash power plant pollution

Latest News

Carbon Plan must account for affordability

Yesterday evening, the North Carolina Utilities Commission approved several measures to lower carbon emissions in North Carolina. The commission chose to focus on short term plans and therefore not pick any single portfolio or generation mix, the plan falls far short of what the law that started this process allowed and what could have been accomplished.

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Statement on rolling blackouts in areas served by the Tennessee Valley Authority

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Dec. 24, 2022 CONTACT: Bri…

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North Carolina Utilities Commission should make the right decision on Duke’s Carbon Plan

Why do legislators and those who blindly accept Duke’s promises act surprised when vague commitments around affordability result in ratepayers getting the short end of the stick? Why do they feign surprise when Duke Energy suggests missing a timeline they set for themselves? Why do they pretend to be shocked when years of advocacy and “compromise” result in a utility cherry-picking what they want, robbing Peter to pay Paul.

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Scorecards rate rural electric cooperatives in Virginia

A scorecard released today by Appalachian Voices reveals that rural electric cooperatives in the Southeast need critical reform to ensure they are operating according to good governance standards and providing clean energy programs to their members. The new scorecards build on a previous project, and find that while Virginia’s electric co-ops have made some reforms and are leading the region, there is still room for improvement.

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Scorecards rate rural electric cooperatives in Tennessee

Today, advocacy organizations across seven southeastern states released scorecards that examine the policies and programs of the region’s rural electric cooperatives across a number of areas, including governance, transparency, energy efficiency, member access to renewable energy and other factors. Though no co-op across seven states scored more than 65 out of 100 total points, co-ops in Tennessee achieved an average score of 28 points.

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Scorecards rate rural electric cooperatives in North Carolina

Today, Appalachian Voices released scorecards examining how electric cooperatives in North Carolina measured up across a number of areas, including governance, transparency, energy efficiency, member access to clean energy and other factors. The results showed that the majority of the 26 co-ops in North Carolina impose significant barriers for customer-members to participate in the democratic governance of their co-ops, while only a few offer services or supportive policies to help members lower their electric bills.

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