Clean Energy Access for All:
A Design Sprint on Funding Models 

On October 18, 2018, Acterra hosted a one-day "design sprint," a proven methodology for solving problems through designing, prototyping, and testing ideas. The sprint brought together 42 participants from 33 community based organizations (CBOs), non-profits, for-profits in community level renewable energy project finance, community leadership from local disadvantaged communities, foundations, philanthropy, and county sustainability departments in order to prototype solutions to challenges outlined in the Giving Code, a report on nonprofits and philanthropy in Silicon Valley. We looked at this question through the lens of environmental CBOs who are working to make clean energy available to all in Silicon Valley, where low-income communities are especially vulnerable to environmental degradation due to the very high cost of housing combined with the effects of climate change and sea-level rise.

Hear from Sprint participants about the outcomes from the day by tuning into the debrief webinar that was held on December 6, 2018.

In addition to dozens of ideas and many new partnerships, ideas for four short-term working groups emerged:

Storytelling Working Group

Goal: Make it easier to communicate the importance of clean energy for all by creating a shared language among all stakeholders.

Desired Outcomes:
• Set of talking points for CBOs and communities to use when communicating with funders, policymakers
• Best practices for getting communities to the table early

Status: This opportunity is still open.


Metrics Working Group

Goal: Make it easier for CBOs and funders to measure what impact clean energy is having in the communities they serve.

Desired Outcome: Resource guide developed by funders and CBOs with framework of high-value metrics with tips and best practices for collecting those metrics.

Status: Please read the final report here.


Policy Working Group


Goal: Remove policy barriers to clean energy access for all.

Desired Outcome: I.D. which policies impede progress on establishment of clean energy access for all (in CA).

Status: Please read the final report here.

Funding/Business Models Working Group

Goal: Remove barriers to funding clean energy solutions.

Desired Outcome: Resource guide/tool for CBOs and community leaders to identify best sources for making clean energy available in their local communities.

Status: This opportunity is still open.

Download the whitepaper, based on outcomes from the summit, here

For questions about these projects, contact Lauren Weston at