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San Diego Solar Company Shines Light On Job Opportunities

Trainees climbed onto rooftops to install solar panels during job training se...

Photo by Ebone Monet

Above: Trainees climbed onto rooftops to install solar panels during job training session at a home in Lincoln Park, Dec. 12th, 2018.

San Diego community groups delivered green energy and hands-on job training at a Lincoln Park home Wednesday.

GRID Alternatives San Diego staff members said they have installed solar panels on more than 1,000 local homes in the last decade. The nonprofit gives solar panel systems to families in communities dealing with low job employment and pollution. These systems normally cost between $10,000 to $15,000.

Photo by Ebone Monet

Trainees learn about solar panel wiring during a job training session at a home in Lincoln Park, Dec. 12th, 2018.

“When I heard about it, I was like I want to do that install solar panels,” said Anthony Cross, a GRID Alternatives trainee. “Learn about solar installation, racking systems and how its wired up. I was really interested in it.”

After a stint of what he calls “dead-end jobs,” 22-year-old Cross added solar installation to his resume. He said it’s another important step towards building a career.

"I'm super proud of myself. I didn't think I'd be doing this. This is something I never thought I'd be doing so I'm really proud of myself," said Cross.

The effort is part of NAACP’s Solar Equity Initiative. According to the NAACP, this initiative is in response to an International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health study. Researchers found low-income communities of color are disproportionately affected by pollution but have few resources to move forward with energy-efficient upgrades.

NAACP San Diego and Alliance for African Assistance paired up with solar companies GRID Alternatives San Diego and Sunrun to provide green job training and no-cost solar panel installations in these communities.

By 2020, the state of California will require solar panels on all newly built homes.

Reported by Kris Arciaga

African-American community leaders team up with nonprofit solar companies to help communities affected by pollution.

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