On September 18, members of the White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy celebrated National Clean Energy Week with their boots on the ground, or rather, on the roof. After President Biden spent weeks pushing to rebuild the West in the wake of catastrophic wildfires, and as he worked tirelessly to get through the transformative, bipartisan infrastructure bill, the team’s idea for a pause was to launch a community solar project in Ward. 8 in Washington, DC. with local clean energy company New Columbia Solar, where White House staff donned safety helmets and installed solar panels.
“The climate crisis has a powerful way of bringing us together as we see those effects,” Ali Zaidi, deputy director of the White House Office of Domestic Climate Policy, said of Hurricane Ida and the California wildfires. “And what’s so exciting is to see how we come together around solutions to that crisis. So yes, we need to come together and face those wildfires and those storms and stand together as communities when we rebuild, but we need to make an effort to come together and build better back into our communities every day.
On Saturday, the team joined the local clean energy company and affordable housing owners to come together around a clean energy solution and bring a 374 kW solar panel to a disadvantaged community in the district.
While the White House Office on Domestic Climate Policy visited the community’s solar energy site, they met and learned from employees who participated in local training programs, including some who value solar energy because it provided them with a career path that may not otherwise be available. would have been for them.
“For me, growing up in DC, I’ve always felt the need to give back to my hometown,” said Cristian Blanco, installer at New Columbia Solar. “Joining New Columbia Solar allowed me to do just that: the opportunity to do something positive for my community.”
Taking an interest in a local community solar project has allowed the White House staff to bring together clean energy professionals, affordable community residents, real estate owners and local policy makers to celebrate the positive results of years of local effort.
News from New Columbia Solar