The Just Transition Fund

Host Organization: Just Transition Fundmdi-circle-small Keswick, VA, US mdi-circle-small


In communities across the country, coal mines and power plants are shutting down for good. This profound shift is creating economic upheaval in places where there is often a lack of good-paying jobs in sectors not tied to fossil fuels.

The pace of the energy transition and other economic changes have left these communities with little time to plan for the disappearance of major employers and the tax base that supports public services, schools, and health care systems.

These challenges are layered on top of preexisting problems. Rural communities recovered more slowly from the Great Recession, and the COVID-19 pandemic has taken an enormous toll on industries, including energy, that are enmeshed in global markets.

Poor access to broadband—a persistent inequity in rural America and tribal areas—has put transitioning energy communities at a further disadvantage by restricting opportunities of work, education, health care, and civic engagement.

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About the Host

The Just Transition Fund was established in spring 2015 by Rockefeller Family Fund and the Appalachia Funders Network with the support of six other foundation partners: blue moon fund, Chorus Foundation, the Hewlett Foundation, The JPB Foundation, The Mary Reynolds Babcock Foundation, and Mertz Gilmore Foundation.

The Fund was initially created to help local organizations secure funding through the POWER Initiative, the first federal program targeted to communities impacted by the changing coal economy. In the process, we helped jumpstart the engagement of national philanthropy and showcased the innovative, ground-up ways that local communities are working to revitalize their local economies.

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