How California Climate Leaders are Bringing Solar to All

In an effort to bring green energy to all residents, California recently released a multimillion-dollar plan that will bring solar to communities that are often overlooked or unable to invest in clean energy solutions.

The ten-year plan includes a budget of $100 million, and will be directed at investing and installing solar infrastructure for single and multifamily housing that would otherwise be unable to afford the upfront costs associated with solar. Early projections estimate that the program will facilitate installing solar on 210,000 housing units throughout the state, which will bring real benefits to both the environment and to residents. Energy savings are estimated to be $38 million per year, and over $1.8 billion over the life of the policy.

The plan is particularly important due to its focus on minority and low-income communities. Such communities are disproportionately exposed to pollutants, and climate solutions have traditionally been out of reach. This new program is one of the first steps to correct this trend. Improving the lives of California residents, of all incomes, races, and ethnicities is becoming a priority for legislators and community leaders. Join with community and municipal officials to get your city on the Path to Positive.

California legislature delivers environmental justice for poor communities

By Haya El Nasser | Al Jazeera America | September 25, 2015

LOS ANGELES — The national push for alternative energy sources often does not reach one of the largest segments of the U.S. population: low-income, minority communities.

But a bill on California Gov. Jerry Brown’s desk is the most ambitious in the nation to focus on a population that is frequently seen as the last to benefit from green technologies.

The Multi-Family Affordable Housing Solar Roofs program will pay up to $100 million a year for at least 10 years to install solar panels on 210,000 affordable housing units.

“It’s the longest-term program. It makes the largest investment in getting solar into low-income communities and is the only program that gets the economic benefits of solar directly to tenants,” said Amy Vanderwarker, a co-director of the California Environmental Justice Alliance.

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