Nonprofits and Clean Energy Entrepreneurship: Shifting the Norm at CalSEED

By Victoria Paykar

CalSEED has gotten its fair share of applicants looking to bring clean energy concepts to market. However, we see an important group mostly missing from this collection of entrepreneurs eager to advance their hardware or software concepts in energy efficiency, energy generation, storage, electric vehicle technologies and more: nonprofits.

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It's Your Summertime Magic: Policy Wins, Events, and Resources from the Law Center

Last month we shared 10 ways to make Sustainable Economies Law Center part of your summer. Now, we have even more summertime magic for you! Check out our upcoming events, recent policy news, legal resources, and new cartoon library!

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5 shared living ideas to counter rising housing costs

By Courtney Pankrat for Shareable 

Excerpt: In the past 50 years, overall housing costs for both renters and owners have skyrocketed at astronomical rates in the U.S. The most drastic example of this is in San Francisco, California, where according to one study saw a "37.9 percent spike, from $2,900/month on average to $4,000/month even" between 2012 and 2017, Curbed San Francisco reported. Meanwhile, the median income in the city by the Bay is around $82,900. This problem, of course, isn't limited just to San Francisco or the Bay Area. Residents in relatively smaller housing markets like Denver, Colorado and Portland, Oregon, are in similar boats. Traditional housing options are clearly unattainable for many, and people are getting creative in how they meet their housing needs. Some of these have been around for decades, like cooperative housing and community land trusts, while some like tiny house communities have been popularized in recent years. Below, we take a look at some shared housing models around the globe that people are turning to in order to counter the high costs of living.

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Capital Impact Partners’ Fourth Co-op Innovation Award Addresses Racial Inequality

By Capital Impact Partners

Capital Impact Partners announced today that it has awarded grants totaling $50,000 to the Association for Black Economic Power and the Sustainable Economies Law Center, co-winners of its fourth annual Co-op Innovation Award. This year, the award recognizes two organizations leading initiatives that address racial inequality and create social impact through economic empowerment for residents in low-income communities.

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'Workplaces are commons': Q&A with Sustainable Economies Law Center's Ricardo Nuñez and Chris Tittle

By Robert Raymond for Shareable 

Excerpt: Nobody gets to vote on the decisions made in the workplace, on who their boss is, on what they’re company produces or how it's distributed. When it comes to democracy in modern society, economic control is notably absent. The Sustainable Economies Law Center is an organization based out of Oakland, California, that puts economic democracy front and center in its mission to support community resilience and grassroots economic empowerment. The organization provides legal tools, such as education, research, advice, and advocacy with the aim cultivating a new legal landscape that supports economic democracy in the broadest sense.

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70 Experts Share Their Best Advocacy Planning, Strategy, Skills and Training Tips

By Ann Dermody for CQ

Excerpt: How would you like to have your own personal government relations or advocacy mentor on speed dial? Even, if you’d been in the business for years? Well, we’re about to give you the next best thing. We conducted 70, (yes, 70!) interviews with some of the leading minds in the worlds of government relations, nonprofit, advocacy, public policy, and fundraising, and asked them four pertinent questions:

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Cooperative California Cities and the “New Economy”: Learning From History, Starting from Success

By Jason Spicer for CoLab Radio

Excerpt: The “New Economy” label is used by a rising generation seeking to promote economic democracy, and build an economy which achieves the three e’s of the famed “urban planner’s triangle”: environmental sustainability, social equity, and economic development.

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SEED LIBRARIANS ARE FIGHTING TO PROTECT THE U.S.’S RESILIENT AND DIVERSE FOOD SYSTEM

By Mark Schapiro for Pacific Standard

Illustration: Edel Rodriguez

Excerpt: Inside every seed library — and there are more than 400 of them now — is another tale. Here are seeds that have been locally cultivated, saved, and passed along from farmer to farmer. They are repositories of genetic information that have been quietly spreading across America during the last decade. They tell the story of how, at a time of unprecedented climatic stress on our food supply, people are fighting to expand their range of crop choices to respond to changing climate conditions.

As one company after another is purchased by the giants that now dominate the seed trade — most notably Bayer-Monsanto, Syngenta, and DuPont-Pioneer, which together have purchased hundreds of locally based seed companies over the past 20 years — the libraries are defying efforts to homogenize the seeds.

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10 ways to get to know Sustainable Economies Law Center this summer!

Happy summer! Here are 10 ways to make Sustainable Economies Law Center part of your summertime fun...

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Immigrants...We Get the Job Done!

Immigrant cooperatives across the country are building community wealth. “In today's anti-immigrant context, access to ongoing legal expertise is absolutely essential,” explains Maria Pascual, the director of Prospera. Headquartered in Oakland’s Fruitvale neighborhood, Prospera advances economic empowerment of Latina immigrant women by providing cooperative business ownership opportunities.

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Community Controlled Food Systems Never Tasted So Good!

At the Law Center, we’re supporting worker-owned and democratic enterprises that are transforming conventional notions of power, control, and success. This is why we are committed to serving clients like People’s Kitchen Collective, a cooperatively governed food justice enterprise based in Oakland, CA.

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Stopping Displacement in Oakland Through Cooperative Solutions

Two years ago, amidst the growing housing and homelessness crisis and a lack of visionary leadership in Oakland City Hall, Noni Session decided to take action.

“One of the realizations that came out of our canvassing work was that we need a cooperative economy. We need to govern ourselves because we cannot depend on our leaders right now,” Noni says.

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Dear Diary, Women and Immigrants Are Getting It Done!

I took up journaling last year, and…WOW.

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Guess Who's Coming for Dinner

Gig Economy Workers Barely Getting ByHave you noticed how many tech start-ups are interested in food these days? We have. There are dozens of apps that deliver food right to your door (either by a human being or sometimes even by a robot) and you can order take-out, groceries, or partially prepared meals with a few taps on your phone.

At the Sustainable Economies Law Center, we support creativity and innovation in many ways, one of which is to uplift homemade food enterprises. So, it wasn’t easy to come to our decision to not support AB 626. AB 626 is a bill that was drafted at the behest of tech company executives and lobbyists to prioritize their interests above the interests of home cooks and consumers. After being stalled for several months, the bill passed a vote of the full Assembly in January and will soon be up for a vote in the Senate Health Committee.

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Who Can Make Policy? (March 2018 Newsletter)

A while back we asked ourselves, who can make policy? Our answer: EVERYONE! 

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