❄️ Greetings Midwest BDC!
Welcome to December, when we are welcoming in the Holiday season and colder winter weather. We hope that you all are able to spend this time celebrating the wins of 2022, relaxing with family and friends, and recharging. Our mission to ensure affordable, healthy, and environmentally sound heating for our homes and buildings is more pertinent than ever in these winter months, and we are thankful to have you working alongside us!
As we look forward to the start of the new year, the MWBDC Annual Meeting will be held on January 13, 2023. Here we will be participating in goal and strategy setting for the year, as well as voting on our inaugural Board of Directors.
It is vital that we receive nominations for board members across all sectors and backgrounds to accurately reflect the diversity of our Coalition. Please continue to do outreach in the coming weeks and share the opportunity to join our board with your networks. And if you think you would be a good fit – apply now!
Read on for announcements from Coalition members, upcoming webinars and events, and funding opportunities.
– Marnese, Margaret, Jacob, and Maggie
Robin Lisowski is Director of Service Solutions at Slipstream, where she leads planning efforts related to emerging services, including beneficial electrification. Robin has worked with energy utilities for 15 years and in the energy efficiency industry since 2008. She has a passion for interdisciplinary approaches to energy management and sustainability and the nonprofit’s leadership role in this space. Robin has a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science and Spanish from Augsburg College and a Master of Arts Degree in Public Policy and Administration from the La Follette School of Public Affairs at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
De’Angelus Garcia Bey
De’Angelus is the Communicatons Strategist at Soulardarity.
“I am a multimedia storyteller who uses photography, graphic design, and urban luxury to connect brands and audiences to the cultural value of the product or service they’re experiencing. Things like iconography, symbolism, and “vibes” are what keep me inspired to relate our shared values across platforms. My personal aesthetic is a blended romanticism of French-influence on the Midwest and its’ real-life impact at the intersections of race, class, and wealth. My first experiences with leveraging these social components to design satisfying creative experiences began with my aggressive pursuit of the music industry at the major and independent level. My professional experience has now grown to include managing brand direction for nonprofit organizations, small businesses, and various fine and performing artists.”
To view upcoming working group meetings and other Coalition events online, visit midwestdecarb.org/calendar.
December 1: Governance Working Group
The Governance Working Group meets every other Thursday at 9 AM CST / 10 AM EST. To participate, please email Marnese.
December 1: AWHI Steering Committee
This group meets on the first Thursday of the month at 10 AM CST / 11 AM EST. To participate, email Jacob.
December 5: Youth Working Group Meeting
This group meets on the first Monday of every month at 6 PM CST / 7 PM EST. To participate, please contact Marnese.
December 7: Health Working Group
The Health Working Group meets monthly on the first Wednesday at 12 PM CST / 1 PM EST. To participate, please email Emma Hines.
December 9: Healing Justice Working Group
This group meets at 12:00 CST / 1:00 AM EST for one hour. To participate, please contact Marnese.
December 14: Coalition Monthly Meeting 1:00 CST / 2:00 EST
- Member Spotlights
- Working Groups Year-in-Review
- Annual Meeting Preview
December 15: Governance Working Group
The Governance Working Group meets every other Thursday at 9 AM CST / 10 AM EST. To participate, please email Marnese.
December 15: Federal Policy Working Group
The Federal Policy Working Group meets for 90 minutes at 10:30 AM CST / 11:30 AM EST. To participate, please email Marnese.
December 21: Equity Working Group
The Equity Working Group meets for 90 minutes every third Wednesday at 12 PM CST / 1 PM EST. To participate please email Marnese.
For full details about all Coalition working groups, keep reading.
Board Member Nomination Form
The nominations form for the inaugural Midwest Building Decarbonization Coalition Board of Directors is now available. Do you know someone who would be a great addition to our work? Nominate them to serve on the board! Voting on the Board of Directors will take place on January 13, 2023 at the MWBDC Annual Meeting.
Board of Directors Informational Session – December 19
Have questions about being on the Board of Directors or the application process? Join this informational session with MWBDC staff to ask any questions you may have! Register here.
We welcome you to fill out the Midwest Building Decarbonization Coalition Membership Application. We invite you to submit an application as a Coalition Member (Organizational Member or Individual Member) or Working Group Participant. Applications can be submitted HERE . There will be three forms that you will have to sign and send back. Please send back to [email protected].
Benefits of membership include: Collective bargaining power, enhanced perspective and learning from diverse fields of building trades, governmental, health, equity and climate science.
- Everyone has the same rights and privileges as a member of the MWDBC. All members work for equitable decarbonization in the Midwest
- Growing capacity around equitable decarbonization #organizations involved – information sharing & commitment to learning
- Stronger collective power to individuals and organizations to advance Equitable Building Decarbonization.
- Right to vote on Coalition business, priorities and sign-on(s)
- Access to trainings and funding opportunities
- Participatory processes in goal and visioning setting
- Expertise in areas of building decarbonization
- Opportunity to lead and work alongside members on campaigns, share information and annual gatherings build equitable decarbonization in the Midwest
Annual Meeting – New Date!
The Midwest BDC Annual Meeting is slated for January 13, 2023. At this meeting, Coalition Members will be voting on our inaugural Board of Directors. You don’t want to miss it! Register now.
Announcement from June Kelsaw, IN:
As a participant in the Faith Base Working Group, I am happy to report that my Church, True Love Baptist Church Fort Wayne, IN is becoming a model Church for Midwest BDC in our community by installing All New efficient Window and Doors in the Church and we are excited and will continue to show BIPOC climate issues can be met, even when we start with exchanging our traditional incandescent bulbs to LED bulbs, we can All begin to implement climate solutions that are inclusive, regenerative, replicable, and scalable. We are so proud to be able to step out as a frontline Church in this community with Midwest BDC help!
Thanks for sharing, June!
Webinar: State Action Is Key To Inflation Reduction Act Implementation
The Inflation Reduction Act is the most significant climate legislation in United States history, but reaching its full economic development and emissions reduction potential will require state and local governments to act quickly on implementation.
How will the midterm elections impact state efforts to leverage IRA provisions to create jobs, cut emissions, and strengthen economies?
Join Energy Innovation and the U.S. Department of Energy to learn more about what’s in the IRA and what’s needed to unlock its full potential. December 7, 1:00 MT on Zoom. Register now!
Webinar: Buildings Hub Live: What Do the Midterms Mean for Building Electrification?
Atlas Public Policy is excited to host our fourth episode of “Buildings Hub Live,” where we spotlight the changemakers and technologies leading the charge to electrify our built environment. Join us for a special post-Midterm election conversation on Wednesday, December 14 at 2PM EST where we’ll sit down with Julia Pyper, host of the “Political Climate” podcast series and Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council, and Justin Worland, Senior Climate Correspondent at TIME Magazine, to discuss the implications of the election outcome for building sector electrification. How might the results change or accelerate the push to decarbonize the US buildings stock on the federal, state and local level? What does the unexpected outcome mean for the future of decarbonization policy over the next two years? Register now!
Federal Funding for Energy Work at Houses of Worship from the Inflation Reduction Act
Check out this blog post from Interfaith Power and Light detailing funding opportunities for houses of worship doing clean energy work.
“It’s expected that by February 2023 more of the federal program details will be available. Until then, there are a few things you can do to help prepare. You can benchmark your buildings – line up 12 months of utility bills, find out the construction date of your building, track occupancy rates, and use IPL’s Cool Congregations Calculator to learn more about your congregation’s carbon footprint. You can also learn what other sources of funding you can leverage to go along with the federal funding – state, local, and utility.”
Biden-Harris Administration Launches $80 Million Program for Energy Upgrades in Public Schools
The Renew America’s Schools grant program will support the implementation of infrastructure improvements in schools, with a focus on local education agencies (LEAs) that qualify as rural and/or high poverty. Eligible projects can include a variety of energy improvements, including new heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC). The deadline for applicant concept papers is January 26, 2023 and full applications are due April 21, 2023. Read more details here.
The Fund for Frontline Power is accepting applications until January 15, 2023.
From their website: “The vision of the fund is to move resources to frontline communities who are implementing climate solutions that are inclusive, regenerative, replicable, and scalable. This fund has been designed and managed by a 13-member Grassroots Governance Body comprised of grassroots climate justice advocates from across the country. The Governance Body will also review and make final decisions on the fund awards. The F4FP grant applications will be open November 1, 2022 until January 15, 2023.”
The DOE released two grant opportunities for local providers of the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP). If you have a relationship with a local WAP provider (or are one), these grants could be a great opportunity to do deeper building decarb projects at the local level.
Memorandum 096: Sustainable Energy Resources for Consumers (SERC) grants– This fund can be used for technology not generally covered by WAP (including heat pumps and onsite renewables) and is not required to follow the average cost per unit allowable expenses for weatherization jobs and renewable energy measures. Letter of Interests due 11/30/2022.
Memorandum 097: Community Scale Pilot Project (CSPP) grants– The goal of the CSPP is to pilot complex place-based deployment of WAP services to income-eligible households within a specific geographic area, housing type(s), and/or specific demographics. Applications due 12/21/2022.
Midwest Equitable Building Decarbonization Advocate | NRDC
Senior Researcher- Energy Systems Engineering | Slipstream
Senior Researcher, Residential HVAC / Building Science | Slipstream
Campaign Representative – Healthy Communities and Building Decarbonization (Michigan) | Sierra Club
Director of the Advanced Materials & Manufacturing Technologies Office | Department of Energy
Director of the Industrial Efficiency and Decarbonization Office | Department of Energy
Staff Attorney – Climate Change Programs | Mitchell Hamline School of Law
- Carbon Markets Manager
- Social Media Community Engagement Lead
- Reporter: Clean Energy — Canary Media
- Manager – Community Engagement
- Manager – Carbon Free Electricity
- Communications Lead – Carbon-Free Electricity
- Summer 2023 Internships
Do you have announcements for the next Newsletter? Share them with Maggie at [email protected].
Handy fact sheet providing an overview of the Midwest Building Decarbonization Coalition’s mission, vision, and impact.
Energy Equity for Renters Toolkit – ACEEE
“Local governments across the country are working to combat two crises at once: climate change and a lack of affordable housing. However, local government staff and stakeholders (e.g., community-based organizations, affordable housing providers, lenders, utilities, and advocates) often tackle these issues separately. This toolkit offers guidance to local government staff and these stakeholder groups on how to integrate energy efficiency and affordable housing policy, thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions and preserving or creating affordable housing. The toolkit also discusses strategies for financing and funding energy efficiency retrofits in affordable housing; strategies to effectively engage property owners, buildings staff, and renters on energy efficiency; and, lastly, equity accountability measures that can help institutionalize equity-driven planning and program implementation. Throughout, the toolkit profiles innovative program case studies from across the country.”
The tragic reason “natural” gas smells so bad – Gas Leaks
“You probably know what to do when you smell rotten eggs or sulfur in your home — get outside as soon as possible and call 911. There could be a gas leak, which can have deadly consequences.
But did you know that the foul smell in “natural” gas isn’t natural at all? When gas is produced through drilling and fracking, it is completely odorless. To be sure people notice when gas is leaking, the industry adds an extra smelly chemical called mercaptan to its product before pumping it into millions of homes, schools and businesses.”
NATIONAL AND REGIONAL NEWS
Utility assistance demand is high in Iowa as inflation pressure meets cold weather | The Gazette (Iowa), Nov. 25, 2022
Utility assistance website, rescheduled event can help with energy bills | M Live, Nov. 26, 2022
With Federal Aid on the Table, Utilities Shift to Embrace Climate Goals* | New York Times, Nov. 29, 2022
Wisconsin program aims to boost diversity in clean energy economy | Yale Climate Connections Nov. 23, 2022
What the Midterm Election Results Mean for Climate Action and the Environment | Sierra, Nov. 10. 2022
Millions of US Homes Are Installing Heat Pumps. Will It Be Enough? | RMI, Nov. 1, 2022
Today’s rate designs are defective. How can utilities better recover their fixed costs, and from whom? | Utility Dive, Nov. 20, 2022
Why Do We Still Have Energy Shutoffs? Another World is Possible. | Energy Equity Project, Nov. 14, 2022
Yes, We Need to Build a Lot More Renewable Energy a Lot Faster. But Scrapping Environmental Laws Isn’t the Way to Do That. | Sierra, Nov. 14, 2022
Scrub Hub: Are heat pumps better for the environment and my wallet? | IndyStar, Nov. 14, 2022
Clean energy and climate are poised to take priority in new DFL-controlled Minnesota Legislature. | Sahan Journal, Nov. 16, 2022
Will Michigan seize historic chance to act on climate? | Planet Detroit, Nov. 15, 2022
This startup is adding a battery to induction stoves | Canary Media, Nov. 17, 2022
How does your state rank on fostering community-led clean energy? | Canary Media, Oct. 14, 2022
Indiana, Iowa, Ohio and Wisconsin Lag on Environmental Justice Issues | Inside Climate News, Nov. 21, 2022
Utilities are spending more on low-income efficiency programs, but disparities remain: ACEEE | Utility Dive, Nov. 18. 2022
Local chef shows the perks of induction cooking | CBS Boston, Dec. 5, 2022
*Indicates that unfortunately, this article is behind a paywall.
All Coalition members should now have been added to the Midwest BDC listserv. We will be using the listserv to distribute this monthly newsletter, monthly meeting agendas, and generally as a forum for discussion and resource sharing.
If you are having trouble accessing the listserv, please email Maggie.