Post Carbon Fellow and author of Local Dollars, Local Sense Michael Shuman was referred to in this article on community power projects.
From the article:
To put it simply, power by the people is power to the people.
Let’s start with the economy. For too long, almost all of us have been energy consumers. Now, though, we’re rapidly starting to become energy producers. In California, for instance, the number of solar installations grew from 500 to more than 50,000 between 1999 and 2011. Most of these new solar power producers are saving on--or have eliminated outright--their utility bills. This means more dollars that circulate within communities instead of flowing to utilities and fossil fuel companies.
Or, think about all the property owners already making double digit returns on investments in energy efficiency. McKinsey and Co. has estimated that the average rate of return for global energy efficiency investments that could be made by 2020 is 17%, and that the total amount of money that could be saved via these investments is $900 billion. As Michael Shuman writes in Local Dollars, Local Sense, many homeowners can earn such good rates of return by investing in efficiency at home that they should see energy efficiency a new high-yield investment type—a way of diversifying portfolios so that they includes less Wall Street and more stable local value.