Practical Tool 6

Resources to accompany 10 Practical Tools for a Resilient Local Economy

Practical Tool #6: Community-based Investment

EXAMPLES OF COMMUNITY-BASED INVESTMENT

· Totnes, Devon, UK: Totnes Community Wind Farm and Totnes Anaerobic Digestion Partnership and http://transitionculture.org/2010/09/13/the-launch-of-the-totnes-renewable-energy-society/
Further details at p. 139 of Transition In Action, the Totnes Energy Descent Action Plan

· Agricultural land trusts (Marin, California http://www.malt.org/ )

· Mendo Food Futures, Mendocino County, California http://campfire.theoildrum.com/node/5158

· Of all the approaches listed in this series, community-based investment is perhaps the most under-developed, here in the U.S. The types of things we’re seeing being done within Transition Initiatives in the UK – investment in local power companies, community-owned bakeries – may be a bit cutting-edge for us here. Here in the U.S., many of these would require financial and legal sophistication to set up formally – issuing a Prospectus and public investment legalities and such. If you have old-paradigm investment professionals within your Transition initiative or within your community LETS network, perhaps they could lead the way.

PRE-EXISTING FINANCIAL ENTITIES

where your community might be able to create a fund (probably in exchange for a fee)

· Community Investing http://www.communityinvest.org/overview/what.cfm

· Community Foundations http://www.communityfoundations.net/page14088.html

· A very simplistic setup for much smaller funding amounts: ChipIn or PayPal widgets on your website

Other variations on the concept:

· Citizens Land Bank http://www.cesj.org/homestead/strategies/community/cic-full-nk.html

· The “Town Banks” concept mentioned in this article http://sustainableindustries.com/articles/2008/12/banks-new-economy

· Create something similar to The Community Foundation www.nlacf.org

· Take the ideas of the “Declaration of Interdependence” of the B Corporations and go local. www.bcorporation.net

CONVENTIONAL BANKING

Minimize your participation in the conventional Big Bank system

· MoveYourMoney.info

· Independent Community Bankers of America (see Practical Tool #5)

· Local credit unions sound like a good deal, but do your homework. The ones I researched in my own neighborhood were federal credit unions and they invested in things like car loans and other non-sustainable and un-resilient stuff.

Tiny URL for this post http://tinyurl.com/EconomicResilience6

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About envirochangemakers

We are a community group in the Westchester neighborhood of Los Angeles (LA 90045 near LAX airport). Founded in 2005, we offer classes, events, and community gatherings focused on building a resilient future. We are part of the international Transition Network.
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