Annual Report 2020
Investing together for a climate-safe future
“[The Climate Center] has emerged as a force this year in our public policy discussions. [Their] campaign for a Climate-Safe California is not only crucial, but it is scalable.”State Senator Henry Stern (Santa Monica), August 5, 2020
Investing together for a climate-safe future
Letter from Board Chair Efren Carrillo and CEO Ellie Cohen
Take a moment to imagine a climate-safe California.
Lightning siege, record-breaking heatwaves, 4+ million acres burned, toxic smoke storms… all on top of a deadly pandemic. Despite enormous challenges this year, we have accomplished a lot. As COVID19 began to surge, we realized that we have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to double down on our investments for a climate-safe future by broadening and deepening our statewide climate policy efforts. We are building powerful partnerships to make progress toward our science-based greenhouse gas reductions targets prioritizing a just transition for workers depending on the fossil fuel industry while ensuring equity and justice for everyone.
We are excited about the work ahead and the collaborations we are developing with supporters like you as we implement our Climate-Safe California campaign. The campaign is taking off, with over 650 endorsements to-date including businesses, non-governmental organizations, and government officials. Together we can transform California into a safe, equitable, and thriving place that can inspire the world to the climate action so urgently needed.
A key part of that effort is Community Energy Resilience. Working with state regulators and legislators, we played a key role in the California Public Utilities Commission recent ruling that will make it easier for local governments to plan microgrids in the state. In the legislature, we have been working with Senator Henry Stern’s office on SB 1215, which will help California communities to build out clean and equitable energy systems. Additionally, because of our work over the past year with many of our partners, the state added $50 million to the budget for Community Energy Resilience. Most recently, we launched our Community Resilience Energy webinar series that drew over 1,000 attendees, including from other countries.
We continue to champion Community Choice Energy (CCA) in the Central Valley, where we know it will bring many economic co-benefits. As we have seen across California, where we helped facilitate the phenomenal growth of CCAs to 21 today, serving 88% greenhouse gas free electricity to over 11 million Californians, speed and scale emissions reductions in the electricity sector is possible! We are pleased that our work has paid off, as the Stockton City Council recently approved a feasibility study, a major milestone. In Fresno, we continue to build strong community support with over 100 organizations joining our Friends of Community Choice Energy coalition.
We are especially grateful to outgoing board member, Jane Bender, after 9 years of dedicated service. We would not be where we are today without their commitment. We are pleased to welcome Lokelani Devone (San Francisco) and Mary Luevano (Los Angeles) as we expand and diversify our leadership across the state.
Thank you to our supporters for partnering with us through these tumultuous times and for choosing to persist for a climate-safe future. Your commitment fuels our work and we thank you.
[Climate-Safe Califonia] is urgent and desperately needed. Also urgent is a just transition and safety net for those working in the fossil fuel industry. We must not leave people behind as seen in the coal industry.Carmen Ramírez, Mayor Pro Tem City of Oxnard and public interest attorney
Our Climate-Safe California Campaign employs dozens of scalable solutions that are available right now to get us on track to reverse the climate crisis. The campaign calls upon the State of California to commit by 2022 to accelerating existing state policy timelines to achieve 80% below 1990 levels of GHG emissions and net-negative emissions by 2030. The campaign also insists that policies ensure lower-income communities are no longer disproportionately harmed by fossil fuels and climate impacts and that we implement a just transition to clean energy that leaves no workers behind. Learn more.
We launched our Climate-Safe California campaign this year and it is taking off. We have hundreds of endorsements to-date from businesses, non-governmental organizations, and government officials. These leaders have affirmed that accelerated state timelines for greenhouse gas reductions with equitable resilience measures and just transition for those employed in fossil fuel industries are paramount to ensuring a safe and healthy California.
Since COVID hit, we have hosted more than a dozen webinars with partners, engaging over 1,500 participants on a range of issues that inform our Climate-Safe California platform. Through these online gatherings, our supporters have heard from business, civic, environmental justice, labor, and community leaders. These partners are joining forces with us to push for the legislation needed to rapidly accelerate emissions reductions equitably at the scale required.
We have also collaborated extensively with partner organizations on letters of support to legislators to advocate for accelerating California’s greenhouse gas reduction targets to be more in line with the science and to prioritize lower-income communities with funding. We are so grateful to our partners for their persistence in working for equitable and just solutions to the climate crisis.
Our business network remains devoted to a climate-safe future and we have so much admiration for their determination, despite the enormous challenges they have faced this year. In particular, we are so grateful to all the sponsors of our Community Energy Resilience Series for coming through to ensure that we were able to host our policy summit to gather so many civic, business, and environmental justice leaders together for an important conversation about equitable clean energy resilience in the face of climate change. The urgency of solving the climate crisis and related environmental justice crisis has never been more clear.
We have made substantial progress on Community Energy Resilience with state regulators and legislators. Thanks in part to our efforts, the California Public Utilities Commission recently made a ruling that will make it easier for local governments to plan microgrids in California. In the legislature, we have been working with Senator Henry Stern’s office on SB 1215, which will help California communities to build out clean and equitable energy systems. Additionally, because of our work over the past year with many of our partners, the State added $50 million to the budget for Community Energy Resilience. Most recently, we launched our Community Resilience Energy webinar series that has drawn over 1,000 attendees, including many from other countries.
We continue to champion Community Choice Energy in the Central Valley, where we know it will bring economic co-benefits, and we have seen how successful electricity sector greenhouse gas reductions have been in communities that have launched Community Choice Agencies. We are pleased that our work has paid off, as the Stockton City Council recently approved a feasibility study, a major milestone. In Fresno, we continue to build strong community support with over 100 organizations joining our Friends of Community Choice Energy coalition.
Funding Sources 2020
|Government Grants and Contracts||$400,912|
|Finance & Admin||$249,300||15%|
For our most recent, detailed financial statements, click here.
Thanks to you, our donors
You, our donors, are a vital part of our work. We know that you are vital partners integrally involved with our work. As community members, business leaders, scientists, labor, environmental and social justice groups, and youth, you are critical to achieving rapid greenhouse gas reductions are the most current science and rapidly worsening climate reality demand.
We partner on advocacy for needed climate legislation in Sacramento, webinars to galvanize thought leaders in the movement, and social media campaigns to provide support to decision-makers for taking the bold action required. Our partners work with us on a range of issues that support our Climate-Safe California Campaign, including Community Energy Resilience, Community Choice Energy, Carbon sequestration in soils, clean mobility, and more.
“I strongly endorse the goal of Climate-Safe California to achieve net-negative emissions by 2030; 2050 is too late. The campaign’s focus on science, urgency, and policy is exactly what’s needed – and California must lead the way.”Terry Tamminen, former CAL EPA Secretary under Governor Schwarzenegger, former CEO of the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation and President of Seventh Generation Advisors
Legacy: Eunice Foote Planned Giving Society
We have just kicked off a new project to honor the people who ensure that our work on the climate continues until the world has followed California’s lead to implement policies to save our earth for generations to come. We have just named this group “The Edith Foote Society.” Edith Newton Foote was an American scientist, who in 1856 discovered the cause of global warming, 3 years before John Tyndall published work on heat-trapping gases. We honor her dedication to science and her pioneer work that so many have followed after her. Please let us know if you included us in your estate plans so that we may properly acknowledge your dedication to our work. If you are interested in joining others to secure our future, please click here to learn more.
Our board and staff
We continue to actively expand and diversify our board and staff across the state to achieve our urgent Climate-Safe California goals. For a full listing of our Board and staff members, see here.