Clean Energy
ECC takes a comprehensive, high-road approach to helping communities develop and implement cost-saving clean energy and solutions.
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Water & Food
Food is every society’s “first economy.” Our work includes policy and project development to leverage the assets and capacities of large, place-based institutions.
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Climate-Resilient Economic Systems
Communities can withstand or rebound from climate disruption when they have access to regional, community-owned networks for critical needs.
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Participatory Democracy & Climate Justice
ECC develops multi-stakeholder coalitions to advance a high-road agenda that is inclusive, accountable and equitable.
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Our Mission

The Emerald Cities Collaborative (ECC) pursues a high-road approach to greening our cities, building resilient regional economies and strengthening our democracy. By building cross-sector collaborations, acutely focused on those historically left out of the economic and community development process, we help communities unleash their capacity to build high-road economies that are more sustainable, economically just and democratic.

Our Impact

System Reform

Program/Project Development

Community Impact

6 Title I High Schools

In South/Southeast Los Angeles County now have a community college STEAM experiential learning program spearheaded by ECC to create pathways for underrepresented students into architecture, engineering, construction, and environmental careers.  

360 Title 1 high school students

Completed energy, green building courses and industry certifications 

$250 B

Invested to develop high-road energy efficiency, water and solar projects thanks to ECC leadership. Includes 17 government buildings, two water infrastructure projects and over 20 affordable housing projects.  

1 Place-based Community Resilience Project

Initiated and co-sponsor a multi-stakeholder collaborative to leverage the buying power of Anchor institutions with community assets to invest in community climate resilience initiatives.

$20 M

Sustainable food processing facility spearheaded by ECC in the San Francisco Bay Area will employ 150 local workers into union jobs and worker cooperative, and utilize Black and Brown urban growers as suppliers.  

12 Community College Training Programs

In community organizing co-sponsored with the Community Learning Partnership preparing the next generation of community change agents through experiential learning and credentials.

80%

Of ECC projects pay union or prevailing wages.  

$19 M

In energy efficiency, clean energy and green infrastructure contracts have been awarded to MWDBE contractors as a result of ECC leadership.

3 RENEW Affordable Housing Programs

Established to help affordable housing developers audit, finance, and retrofit their buildings to be energy and water efficient in San Francisco, Seattle and Boston.

260 MWDBE

Completed E-Contractor Academy

Energy & Water Equity Policies

Successfully passed In building electrification,  building performance standards local, net metering, water affordability working in local and national coalitions

Our Impact

System Reform

Program/Project Development

Community Impact

6 Title I High Schools

In South/Southeast Los Angeles County now have a community college STEAM experiential learning program spearheaded by ECC to create pathways for underrepresented students into architecture, engineering, construction, and environmental careers.  

$250 B

Invested to develop high-road energy efficiency, water and solar projects thanks to ECC leadership. Includes 17 government buildings, two water infrastructure projects and over 20 affordable housing projects.  

$20 M

Sustainable food processing facility spearheaded by ECC in the San Francisco Bay Area will employ 150 local workers into union jobs and worker cooperative, and utilize Black and Brown urban growers as suppliers.  

$19 M

In energy efficiency, clean energy and green infrastructure contracts have been awarded to MWDBE contractors as a result of ECC leadership.

260 MWDBE

Completed E-Contractor Academy

10 High Road Policies

Organized and implemented labor and community standards – community workforce agreements, community benefit agreements, local hire and local procurement – within public and private sector policies and projects in LA County, San Francisco, Oakland, Seattle, Portland, Chicago, Boston, and Cleveland/Cuyahoga County that connect hundreds of thousands  low-income residents to high wage careers.

5 Contractor Training Programs

Custom designed and conduct 7-12 week green building training and coaching programs for small and minority, women, veteran and disadvantaged contractors in LA County, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland and Cleveland. 

360 Title 1 high school students

Completed energy, green building courses and industry certifications 

1 Place-based Community Resilience Project

Initiated and co-sponsor a multi-stakeholder collaborative to leverage the buying power of Anchor institutions with community assets to invest in community climate resilience initiatives.

12 Community College Training Programs

In community organizing co-sponsored with the Community Learning Partnership preparing the next generation of community change agents through experiential learning and credentials.

80%

Of ECC projects pay union or prevailing wages.  

3 RENEW Affordable Housing Programs

Established to help affordable housing developers audit, finance, and retrofit their buildings to be energy and water efficient in San Francisco, Seattle and Boston.

Energy & Water Equity Policies

Successfully passed In building electrification,  building performance standards local, net metering, water affordability working in local and national coalitions

2 Skills Workforce Training programs

Custom designed and sponsor 2 industry certified skills training programs in HVAC and operating engineers to connect BIPOC residents to green building careers 

204 disadvantaged youth

Entered union apprenticeship programs

Our Work

ECC has proven that multi-stakeholder, intersectional models work. Whether your goal is to create more opportunities for underrepresented contractors, workers and youth to participate in sustainable development projects; or you seek to engage anchor institutions in local climate resilience efforts; or you need help building an inclusive local corps of environmental/ climate/economic justice advocates, ECC offers programs that can help guide your community along the high road.

What's New?

Equity & Buildings: A Practical Framework for Local Government Decision Makers

The purpose of this framework is to foster stronger relationships
for local government staff, community-based organizations, and
national nonprofits to address equity.

The Hill: To truly build back
better, we need a Justice
100 solution

The Biden administration has ushered in a new progressive era.
Its “build back better” playbook of policies and initiatives address the serious challenges of our generation.

Testimonials

Joel Rogers, J.D., PhD.
COWS Director, University of Wisconsin & Co-Chair, ECC Board
“In 2009, our idea of a high-road economy was considered “interesting,” but untested. We spent a year building the vision and the partnerships, and the next decade turning our vision into action. Today, we have proven models of multi-sector collaboration focused on creating a more sustainable, equitable and democratic future.”
Sunia Zaterman
Executive Director, Council of Large Public Housing Authorities (CLPHA)
“[ECC] brings together a wide array of sectors to solve the problems of greening our cities, building our communities, and of economic justice.”
Gerald (Gerry) Hudson
SEIU Secretary-Treasurer and Co-Chair, ECC Board
“We are excited to see the growth of this vision and movement toward an equitable, clean economy. It is this dynamism and our results to date that inspire us to head confidently into the next decade.”