• Who is this course for? This course is for everyone ready to start their energy transition. It covers the many inter-related topics and issues that go along with clean energy. The transition is not just as simple as switching on the lights. It’s going to take individual efforts along with systemic change, powered by individuals. It’s important to know all the issues so that you can have a positive impact. It’s not necessary to be a scientist or a legal or business expert, but you may have to spend some extra time on things you’re not familiar with. The course is general and for everyone, while the Toolkit that is Part 3 of the course and can be downloaded separately focuses especially on Illinois and CEJA. We’ll be adding more info on resources in more states soon. 
  • What is the target action for this course? Target actions are things we can do to reduce emissions and/or increase human connections. They are things people can do or participate in that result in a variety of rewards and benefits. The target action right now is to get people started on their energy transition: using clean energy, getting them in to clean energy jobs, and to help others so do as well, and to stop using fossil fuels for electricity and transportation. We produced these educational materials, including the course and the toolkit, to 1) educate people on why we can and must transition now, 2) the keys to success of the transition, and 3) the many ways to participate right now and start feeling the benefits of transition. Basically, by taking this course, you’re jumping into the transition.  We’re giving you a list of things everyone can do, and hopefully inspiring you to find even more.
  • How long will it take for me to complete the course? This will probably take 15 minutes to an hour or more per day over the course of a week or so, depending on how much background you already have on the topics, and how much you want to learn. It’s really a self-guided course, with lots of links to external information. The idea is that you try to absorb the main ideas, then dig deeper into the the topics that interest you most. You don’t have to complete all the lessons if you don’t want to.
  • What are the rewards for taking this class? First of all, you’re going to be super knowledgeable and up to date on all the latest information about clean energy and jobs, and you’re going to know what to do to get involved. If you are a registered member (registration is free) you will gain points for completion of lessons and topics and can participate in the group discussions. Each lesson is worth either 50 points total or ten points per topic in the lesson you complete, then you get another 100 points when you’ve completed all the lessons. If you complete assignments, you get 50 points for each assignment, then if you complete all 3 assignments you can also get a certificate of completion for your CLEANetwork profile and which can be verified by The Climate Economy Education Inc on your resume.
  • What else do I need to know?
    • This is a self-guided course, so keep a notebook with things that interest you or that you want to learn more about.
    • When something jumps out at you or grabs your heart, get on the discussion forum and see who else is thinking about it. A discussion forum is part of the course, so participate in the discussion forum and apply your knowledge.
    • We recommend you do the lessons in order, although it’s not required. You can skip around and even skip lessons or topics; you just won’t get the bonus 100 points unless you complete everything.
    • Also, this course is not the final word on clean energy and jobs. The main goal is to provide the basics and inspire people to dig deeper into topics that interest them.
    • Please note: the Clean Energy Jobs Act is a piece of legislation in Illinois that may come up for a vote at some point. Things about it may change over time, and we will do our best to make sure the course and the toolkit and the course are kept up to date.

Key Takeaways

  1. The transition to clean energy and jobs is going to require that we, as humans, decide to be smarter about how we do things. It’s going to require the kind of mobilization we had after WWII. We have brains, and we need to start using them, start taking responsibility, and start working together. We can do it, it’s going to open up all kinds of new opportunities, and it’s going to be a blast.
  2. It’s the responsibility of every American citizen to make sure that the people who represent them at all levels of government know that they want a transition to clean energy and jobs, urgently. If legislators are still propping up fossil fuels and receiving fossil fuel money, they must be voted out, or we’re just going to keep ending up with more and bigger of the same problems. Politicians must be required to work for all the people they represent, not just big corporations with lots of money who want to bend the rules, but rather including the poor, people of color, women, Indigenous people, fossil fuel workers, local communities, future generations and small businesses.
  3. Everyone has a role to play. For now, please be sure to learn the facts about clean energy and jobs in this course and toolkit, pass it on, get involved, and help make clean energy and jobs happen.


Clean energy is one of the biggest opportunities of our time, in terms of:

  1. Reducing carbon emissions,
  2. The massive number of jobs and investment that will be created, and
  3. The increase in human health, equity, and prosperity.

For best results, the transition to clean energy needs to get about half way there by 2030, and be completed by 2050, or even sooner if possible. So, this is the story of our lifetime. There’s nothing bigger. Clean energy is a big complicated change, but it has to happen, and we have to do it right. Everyone has a role to play, and that starts with taking the responsibility to know the facts and get involved as a citizen of your community, state, and nation.

This course provides learners with essential facts and information so they can:

  • Understand the benefits of clean energy, how it will result in lots of good jobs, and why it’s urgent to transition now,
  • Understand critical factors for a successful clean energy and jobs future for all,
  • Understand how they can start to get their own families and communities hooked into clean energy, and
  • Know the crucial actions that need to be happening now so that we can get this done. There is an entire list of individual target actions that people can take today and every day. There’s also a toolkit to keep handy.
  • Learners are also introduced to the climate venture map, a way to cause the change we want to see.

This course also has a “Focus on Illinois and CEJA,” or the Clean Energy Jobs Act. CEJA is a piece of legislation that has been supported by many individuals, communities and organizations in Illinois, but has not yet been passed by Illinois legislators. As part of this course, learners will also be able to:

  • Talk about the Clean Energy Jobs Act in Illinois and how it will benefit all Illinoisans,
  • Understand why laws are crucial to the success of the clean energy and jobs transition, and
  • Learn how to get involved in their own communities.

It links to a lot of external reports, and copy/pastes important parts of long reports in these lessons so you don’t have to read the whole reports if you don’t want to. This course is also available as an ebook. The benefit of taking the course is that you get points when you complete lessons and the course on CLEANetwork. You will also get points if you join and participate in the discussion group, and you can also get points for sharing on social media or emailing invites to people you know. Thank you and please share! 


We’re not making any representations, warranties or promises by offering this class. There will be things missing, things that could be covered better, but we’ve done our best to get what we feel are some important facts into the course. If you take any of the target actions or click on any of the links, do so at your own risk. Also, please be sure to sign up for and provide feedback in the discussion group. Thanks again!

Course Content

Expand All
Part 1: Understanding Why We Can and Must Transition to Clean Energy and Jobs Now
Part 2: Causing the Change We Want to See
Part 3: A Toolkit for a Clean Recovery 2021: Clean Energy and Jobs - Focus on Illinois and CEJA
Part 4: Assignments - 50 points for each assignment students complete that is approved by instructor