John Farrell, director of the Democratic Energy Initiative at the Institute for Local Self-Reliance (ISLR) in Minneapolis, will speak at T-Bock’s Underground Monday, March 26, at 6:30 p.m.
The title of his talk is “Follow the Money: How Locally-Owned Utilities Build Community.”
Farrell is known as the guru of distributed energy. His presentations of rich data and vivid illustrations explain the economic and environmental benefits of local ownership of decentralized renewable energy.
Farrell’s work appears most regularly on Energy Self-Reliant States, an ILSR blog with timely and compelling analysis of current energy discussions and policy. His work has been featured in the New York Times, Grist, CleanTechnica and beyond, and he’s presented nationally and internationally.
Much of Farrell’s work -- and the focus of his presentation in Decorah -- revolves around the economic opportunity presented by the confluence of technology, economics and stewardship in the 21st century energy world. The corporate-owned, fossil-fueled, centralized energy model of the past century is rapidly being replaced by a distributed, renewable, and potentially locally-owned model, Farrell said.
This transition holds tremendous economic opportunity for innovative and forward-leaning communities to “own their future,” according to Farrell, if they’re ready and willing to do so. Farrell’s talk is free and open to the public, and is hosted by Decorah Power, a group of local citizens exploring the opportunity of creating a municipal electric utility in Decorah. For more information, visit
Warren McKenna, manager of Farmers Electric Cooperative serving Washington, Johnson and Iowa counties, gave a presentation on locally-owned electric power in Decorah last week. His presentation is available online at the Decorah Power website.