One Year of Impact for Climate Equity
We dream of a world beyond poverty & pollution
Together, we can make the solutions to climate change an opportunity to invest in the communities most impacted by it.
An equitable future for our communities is a sustainable future for our planet.
That's why we're implementing a holistic approach to shape federal programs while partnering with disadvantaged communities to maximize historic Inflation Reduction Act investments.
Over the next 10 years, we are going to make history for climate equity
Leading the charge for climate equity on Capitol Hill and beyond
That's why we launched our Climate Investments program to help federal agencies design programs that put equity first, creating healthier communities and promoting economic inclusion. Through regulatory advocacy and reform, we are a leading voice for climate equity nationally.
86% of our recommendations for how to define disadvantaged communities were integrated into the final version of the tool. Some of our key adopted recommendations were to use race and ethnicity data by census tract for analysis and include disadvantaged areas that would have missed thresholds by a slim margin. Dream.Org will use the CEJST to hold the federal government accountable for delivering at least 40% of IRA benefits to disadvantaged communities; 40% is the floor, not the ceiling.
As a result, we helped shape 9 programs, 8 tax incentives, and 6 agency initiatives and equity strategies, impacting $41 billion in program dollars with more to come as agencies continue to release program guidelines. Our comments have led to the adoption of key equity principles across agencies including robust community engagement & technical assistance requirements, economic inclusion targets, data transparency, and best practices for partnership and outreach.
Through education and outreach, we mobilized thousands of our supporters to advocate for the creation of a national green bank that prioritizes equity. We also provided guidance directly to the EPA on how the program should be structured to maximize community benefits. Our efforts paid off – a national green bank network was created in accordance with many of our recommendations. In addition, Dream.Org has launched a partnership with the Coalition for Green Capital to pursue government funding to implement a national green bank serving low-income and disadvantaged communities.
"Our partnership with Dream.Org represents the type of multi-organizational effort that will be necessary to ensure we deploy energy investments by and with communities to address the multi-faceted challenges they face."
– William J. Barber III, Chief Consultant of Environmental Justice & Equity, Coalition for Green Capital
Empowering communities to shape solutions for a greener future
Riverside /San Bernardino, CA
Lumbee River, NC
Building Bridges Locally
"It takes a village to launch a climate project. Working with Dream.Org has been invaluable in connecting us to resources and helping us build our village as we plan for our EV Accelerator in Fresno."
– Dr. Cassandra Little, Fresno Metro Black Chamber of Commerce
"Dream.Org has been an important partner to federal government agencies like the U.S. Environment Protection Agency, helping us make our programs more inclusive of low-income communities and communities of color."
– Martha Guzman, U.S. EPA Region 9 Administrator
Capacity-Building for Community-Based Organizations
We also launched a new monthly partner newsletter to notify nearly 200 community-based organizations about over 35 Inflation Reduction Act funding opportunities and helpful resources, giving them more time to focus on serving their communities.
Uplifting current and future leaders of the green economy
At Dream.Org, we're pursuing that vision by uplifting minority-owned green businesses, providing opportunities for career development and training, and unlocking the genius in these communities.
We have also helped the council make dozens of connections to new companies, funders, and local government entities, resulting in a variety of new projects. Earlier this year, the Dream Business Council also won the Department of Energy’s American Made Challenge for their collaborative, community-based approach to green projects.
Career Pathways for an Inclusive Green Economy
We also awarded 553 scholarships to help BIPOC individuals pursue training, education, and professional development to advance their careers in the clean energy and climate tech sectors. More than half of recipients are justice-impacted. By creating opportunities for Black and Brown talent to become leaders in the green economy, we are building generational wealth for communities of color.
"The scholarship is a blessing for me...I am forever grateful for the opportunity and will use it to create the changes we so desperately need in my community and beyond."
– Alcia Shaw, Scholarship Recipient
Coming together for lasting change
In December 2022, we held a bipartisan policy convening with 18 organizations from across the political spectrum to find common ground on climate. Nearly all of the participants identified racial equity and IRA Implementation as their top priority. 94% of those in attendance identified permitting reform - the process of getting permission to build energy projects - as essential to addressing the urgency of climate change.
Working in coalition with more than two dozen organizations, we established partnerships across the aisle to advocate for permitting reform for clean energy projects. In July, our staff along with supporters from across the country met with 20 congressional offices and shared their vision for a clean, inclusive energy future.
"When I asked Senator Manchin how we could promote environmental change in West Virginia, he told me to find more people like me... I hope that people regardless of their title continue to push for a West Virginia that they want to live in, one that benefits us all in the end."
– Tiara Brown, Dream.Org supporter
Bridging knowledge gaps
We launched our Live Green or Die Tryin' campaign to educate people about the IRA, elevating the importance of community-driven climate solutions. Because of our campaign, these communities will be better equipped to engage with projects as they roll out.
Using influencer content to drive social media engagement, we collaborated with key opinion leaders with a total reach of over 2 million, totaling more than 13 million social media impressions. Over 45,000 individuals sought more information about the Inflation Reduction Act through our website, increasing website traffic by more than 6,000% during the peak of the campaign.