CivicSpark is a Governor’s Initiative AmeriCorps program dedicated to building capacity for local governments to address climate change, water, and land-use needs. During the 11-month service year, CivicSpark fellows will support the State’s response to climate change and integrated water management by working with local governments to complete research, planning, or implementation projects. At the same time, fellows receive substantial professional development training and access to a network of local, regional, and state sustainability leaders.
CivicSpark Newsletter Archive
Los Angeles County, Loma Linda, and Malibu Selected to Receive SoCalGas Grants for Climate Adaptation and Resiliency Planning
Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development awarded 2019-20 CivicSpark Climate Fellows a ZEVe- Award!
The Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development awarded ZEVe- Award to 2019-20 CivicSpark Climate Fellows!
Seeing the Forest for the Trees: Environmental and Economic Strategies for Resilient Forest Management
Opportunity Funds, created in the federal tax bill (H.R. 1) signed into law in December 2017, could unlock private capital to facilitate economic growth in distressed areas.
The spaces at the edge of our streets have evolved so rapidly with the arrival of new mobility and increased delivery needs that local land-use planners and regulators are struggling to create policies that keep pace.
As the focus on the need to address climate change grows, one major greenhouse gas emitter – natural gas – has largely flown under many people’s radar.
Local Governments and Positive Disruption: Leveraging the Sharing Economy for Sustainable Communities
The current state of America’s sharing economy is marked by increased tensions between new sharing companies and well-established business models. How local governments approach these economic disruptions will help shape the future of economic growth and how future business does business.
In the wake of the devastating fires that occurred in Northern California late last year, some have called for a slowdown in the rebuilding process to make time for more thoughtful planning for the future. Unfortunately, the disasters that struck Northern and later Southern California may become the “new normal” as the state prepares for another season of drought.
In 2016, the California Energy Commission awarded 13 projects through the EPIC Challenge: Accelerating the Deployment of Advanced Energy Communities solicitation. The purpose of this solicitation was to fund a competition that would challenge project teams comprised of building developers, local governments, technology developers, researchers, utilities, and other project partners to spend 18 months developing innovative and replicable plans for accelerating the deployment of Advanced Energy Communities. This post contains updates on the projects, as well as new links to project websites where available.
Leading experts in energy gathered at the 2018 Annual Electric Program Investment Charge (EPIC) Symposium to showcase groundbreaking technological advancements in clean energy. This year’s symposium was the largest by far, with over 600 participants made up of utilities, cleantech researchers, entrepreneurs, and businesses from all across California.
The momentum for decarbonization by local jurisdictions seems to be growing stronger by the day. Recently, the City of Los Angeles passed a resolution to develop strategies for fuel substitution and set targets for electrification that their climate goals. This is a huge step forward for such a large city but large or small it is clear that local jurisdictions will once again lead the way to more sustainable and healthy communities for all.
Fires ravaged several California communities last year. Their causes, impacts and how to plan for future disasters – as they relate to energy and energy systems – will be a high priority for local governments and state agencies for a long time.
The major firestorms, hurricanes and mudslides of 2017 underscored the pervasive and growing urgency to improve resilience at the community level.
California is leading the charge as an implementer, innovator and model – and members of the Local Government Commission are the tip of that spear.
It’s a good time to reflect on the state of climate leadership and the role of local governments as 2017 comes to a close.
Local leaders, residents and businesses are grappling with a long list of unanswered questions about Northern CA’s deadliest and most costly wildfire.
Encouraging ridesharing and carsharing is a strategy that would address current conditions and lay the groundwork for a brighter autonomous-vehicle future.
The Local Government Commission joins forces with Path to Positive Communities to inspire and empower local engagement on climate solutions.
The retail sector lost approximately 30,000 jobs in March alone, with thousands of store closings projected through 2017.
Many cities across the country are questioning how far we’ve really come to make bicycling a substantive mode of transportation.
Climate investments benefit the San Joaquin Valley rather than being a detriment to the Valley economy. We review a report released by Next 10.
Access to granular data can help California achieve its energy reduction goals and save consumers and business time, energy, and money.
California has led the charge for electric vehicles with an ambitious strategy to put 1.5 million zero‐emission vehicles on the road by 2025.
As the new administration takes office in Washington, sustainability leaders across the nation have been speculating about the potential impacts on their work.
Since 2003, Ventura County Regional Energy Alliance has worked to assist its members in seeking incentives to promote energy efficiency projects.
This year, the CEC awarded 13 projects through The EPIC Challenge: Accelerating the Deployment of Advanced Energy Communities solicitation.
California’s housing affordability crisis is not only costly for people renting or buying homes, it weakens California’s economy as a whole.
This month, we attempt to address what the new administration might mean to leadership on climate change progress, energy and infrastructure investments.
At the ACEEE Conference, David Baylon – Ecotope, shared how creating a residential option table with the WA energy code gave builders more flexibility.
It’s time land-use planning agencies work together and prepare a Groundwater Sustainability Plan ensuring local water and land-use decisions are aligned.
Video: the Cities of Oakland and Richmond on bringing the message of COP21 back to their communities
“Green” or High-Performance Leases Offer a Solution to the Split Incentive Energy Challenge of Leased Buildings
An innovative approach to residential energy savings from WattzOn and the El Monte Promise Foundation
Case studies from San Diego County, Santa Monica, Sacramento County and Berkeley: How to best use innovative technologies to head towards Zero Net Energy
Energy Efficiency and Equity and Environmental Justice: Lessons and Best Practices from Key EJ Leaders
The Rolling Portfolio Framework, the Energy Efficiency Coordinating Committee, and Why to Participate as a Stakeholder in the Program Administrator Business Plan Development
This special Livable Places Update was adapted from Rick Cole’s keynote at this year’s Ahwahnee Conference for Local Elected Officials
Rapid innovation in the mobility sector could drastically reduce driving, the need for parking, and expanded roadways.