KLA Perspectives

Consistent, Predictable, Accessible Data: Foundation of Climate Action

Posted by Kim Lundgren on Dec 14, 2022 11:57:40 AM

KLA clients lead the way with innovative, scalable, replicable climate solutions at the local level.
Each month in 2022 we will shine a spotlight on their bright ideas.


Guest post by Mike Steinhoff, KLA’s Director of Climate Analysis 

Local governments need access to consistent, high-quality data to develop and track progress on implementation of climate action plans. Massachusetts and other states are working to level the data playing field for more ambitious targets and results. In Massachusetts this has historically happened in fits and starts, but as they formalize more of these processes, we hope to see more agencies providing actionable information from the start. 

We have a strong focus at KLA on the importance of data in the battle against climate change. But not all data is created equal. And the good stuff isn’t always easy to find or possible to access.  

Ask any local government sustainability or climate staff if they’ve ever been stymied or frustrated by their search for data like “How many EVs are in my community?” or “How much energy did we use this year compared to last?”, and you’ll be flooded with examples. And on the other end, utilities and the like are hit with one-off requests at random from each city, town, county. Thus, they provide one-off responses with no guarantee of consistency.  

States cannot meet ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reductions goals without local governments. It stands to reason that you don’t want them all trying to innovate independently or recreate the wheel. They would be wise to follow the lead of Massachusetts which has given its local governments and therefore itself a leg up in this arena by providing the funding, data and tools to align and achieve goals.  

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Topics: climate action, local leadership, climate leadership, data, bright ideas

Download our New Storytelling Guidebook

Posted by Kim Lundgren on Feb 28, 2018 11:29:47 AM

One of our most popular presentations at conferences is a hands-on "How to Turn Your Data Into a Story" session. We talk through the science behind the power of storytelling and why it has been such a force since the days of cave paintings up through today's Facebook posts. Research abounds on how storytelling activates the brain in a way that communicates your message most effectively and can be the spark that empowers people to act.


Stories are remembered up to 22 times more than facts alone.  As local governments, we sit on a pile of data. We need to do more with it. We must recognize that pile as a gold mine of compelling stories.


You can use stories to: 

  • Let your community know about the work you're doing and successes you've had
  • Ensure that elected officials and other key stakeholders are aware of those successes and your impact on people's lives
  • Engage the community in a planning process 
  • Inspire people to take action to help meet your sustainability or other goals

We created this Guidebook -- with our storytelling framework, 4 simple steps, examples and practice exercises -- to help you turn your data into stories and those stories into action.


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Topics: sustainability, data, storytelling