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AB 32 helps low-income communities go solar

Willowbrook resident Rose Pinkney celebrates her new solar panels. (photo: Urban Girl Media/May 22, 2015)

Willowbrook resident Rose Pinkney celebrates her new solar panels with a prayer from Rev. Reginald Hansome of Ascension Lutheran Church and New City Parish. (photo: Urban Girl Media/May 22, 2015)

Rose Pinkney can sleep well at night knowing she is saving 80% on her electric bill. Due in part to AB 32, Ms. Pinkney is projected to save an estimated $39,000 over the next 30 years. How is she achieving that? She has gone solar and so can some of you.

The Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, also known as AB 32, charges polluters for their Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions, which is then placed into a Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. With SB 35 requiring that 25% of the fund goes directly into projects that benefit disadvantaged communities.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe idea is to invest money to promote clean air and energy efficiency to communities that suffer most by climate change.

The California Environmental Protection Agency created CalEnviroScreen which helped identify communities most impacted by poverty and pollution. California Delivers is a coalition of businesses, public health professionals, public officials and community members, who helped with implementing and extending the benefits to assist more families.

Some of the local elected officials who support the project are City of Compton councilman Isaac Galvan, City of LA Mayor Eric Garcetti and City of Santa Monica councilmember Kevin McKeown.  Senator Kevin de Leon, Secretary of State Alex Padilla and Controller Betty Yee, are among the many state representatives working to deliver clean energy and lower electric bills for South Los Angeles residents. Other local organizations like Move LA, California Black Health Network and St. John’s Wellness and Family Center represent transportation and health centers stepping up to provide support too.

GRID Alternatives is a nonprofit who administers the program by screening homeowners and providing job training to low income communities. Homeboy Industries was involved by having their participants go through the necessary job training, to learn how to install the solar panels for those who qualified.

“With GRID’s model, these investments have a triple benefit for the community,” said Michael Kadish, Executive Director of GRID Alternatives Greater Los Angeles.

This is a true example of how public-private partnerships benefit the entire community. GRID estimates they will be able to install solar panels on as many as 1,600 homes.

Ms. Pinkney lives in Willowbrook and is happy to have the panels on her home. “To me, going solar is a way to give back to my community, to provide green energy,” said Pinkney.

The event was hosted by California Delivers, a diverse coalition of businesses, public health professionals, workers, public officials, labor organizations, community and faith leaders, and hundreds of individuals around the state, focused on protecting, implementing and extending the benefits of AB 32 beyond 2020. Visit www.cadelivers.org for more information.

If you are interested in seeing if you qualify for this very low to no cost program, contact GRID Alternatives at (310) 735-9174.

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2 Responses so far.

  1. […] Latino’s have proven to be enviromental leaders by showing their support behind AB 32. […]

  2. […] Related article:  AB 32 Helps Low-Income Communities Go Solar  […]


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