Community Energy Futures Institute
The Sonoran Institute’s Community Energy Futures Institute (CEFI) assists community teams in creating a local vision for independence from fossil fuels and foreign sources and introduces them to alternative energy strategies appropriate to a sustainable future.
CEFI also helps participants develop skills in organizing, community engagement and action planning. They learn to successfully design and implement a sustainable community energy plan that includes efficiency and cost savings, use of renewable energy sources, and improvements to conventional energy-use, transportation and building practices. The next CEFI is being planned for late 2009 or early 2010. Please contact the Institute to receive a notice about this workshop.
CEFI’s objectives are to:
- Encourage responsible development of conventional and alternative energy resources;
- Apply both science and local knowledge to address conservation and community needs;
- Build local awareness and support for energy conservation and sustainability;
- Provide assistance and expertise for local efforts to create vibrant communities while protecting natural areas;
- Help form partnerships that emphasize collaboration in achieving community goals.
CEFI provides participants with knowledge and skills to:
- Determine baselines and goals;
- Engage and communicate effectively with their communities;
- Access financial and technical resources;
- Develop winning public and private partnerships;
- Use all energy resources effectively;
- Work productively with energy suppliers.
The initial four-day CEFI workshop in 2007 hosted teams of local officials and engaged citizens from seven communities in Colorado, Utah, Wyoming and Idaho to learn and share ideas about their energy futures. These communities had already made a commitment to sustainable energy sources and use, and the training helped them develop skills and plans to expand their efforts.