Solar electricity for 10 low-income families, USA

by GRID Alternatives

As 2010 comes to a close, GRID Alternatives has a lot to celebrate! 

GRID has recently launched a new office in the California Central Coast area and we are continuing to expand the regions we serve.  GRID has already surpassed its ambitious 2010 installation goal and as of today has installed 337 new solar electric systems for low income homeowners this year, reaching a total 640 installations to date.  Together, these projects are generating 1.4 megawatts of clean energy and are saving low income families nearly $14 million in energy costs while preventing over 56 thousand tons of greenhouse gas emissions. In 2011, we've set the bar even higher and we're going for another 600 solar installations for 600 more families!

This holiday season, consider supporting GRID and giving the gift of solar in honor of your loved ones and a greener planet and stronger neighborhoods.  There are many different reasons to support GRID's work right now, whether you are concerned about climate change or energy independence, or if you are a job training or low income housing advocate, or just concerned about how you can help keep struggling families from losing their homes.  Maybe you already have a solar electric system and want to share the benefits of renewable energy with others or maybe solar isn't a viable option for your home at this time but you'd still like to get involved and offset your own carbon usage and reduce greenhouse gasses by supporting solar power. 

The sun is a gift that never stops giving and when you support a solar installation for just one low income family, your are supporting thirty years of clean solar power!  Check out photos of our recent projects to see your donations at work!  Thank you for visiting Global Giving and Happy Holidays from GRID! 


GRID Alternatives has now installed over 500 solar systems for low income families and these projects represent over 1 Megawatt of generating capacity! These solar installations are saving California's most vulnerable residents 75% on their energy costs and will reduce almost 50 thousand tons of greenhouse gasses in the next 30 years. GRID has also provided over 5,000 volunteers and green job trainees with the critical hands on experience with solar installation in the field that they'll need in the growing solar marketplace.

GRID Alternatives' unique model demonstrates in a very immediate way the important role that solar renewable energy can play in our communities at both the micro and the macro levels. Alberto is a GRID Alternatives Greater Los Angeles client who lives with his disabled parents. Their medical conditions require them to maintain a level temperature in the home and they struggled to cover their energy costs, which were up to $180 a month. Now that they have gone solar through GRID Alternatives, they pay only up to $10 a month. Alberto says that not only have these energy savings allowed them to invest more in food and health care, which has become more important than ever after their Medicare benefits were cut, but notes that “We have become more conscious about our energy usage ever since the system was put on our home. I don’t know why we were not saving energy before but now I am a strong advocate for others to save energy.”

GRID Alternatives is helping to reduce the threat of global warming and to keep struggling homeowners in their homes, one solar panel at a time.

Completed Solar Elecric System in Escondido, CA
Completed Solar Elecric System in Escondido, CA

GRID Alternatives continues to expand our non-profit solar electric installation services to low income homeowers accross the state. Currently we are serving families in the San Francisco Bay Area, the Greater Los Angeles Area, the Central Valley, San Diego, the Inland Empire and are moving into the Central Coast. To date we have installed 420 solar electric systems, with 100 of those completed in 2010 alone.

To celebrate our growth while installing more solar electric systems throughout the state, GRID Alternatives is hosting several large solar block party installations throughout California. These regional events, called Solarthons, will be held June 12 in Los Angeles, July 31st in the Bay Area, October 2nd in the Central Valley and tentatively October 30th in San Diego. Each event will install 6-10 solar elelctric systems in a single day with community members and local homeowners. Check out for more details about GRID Alternatives regional Solarthon events.


GRID Alternatives is growing rapidly!

To date we have installed 340 solar electric systems, trained 3,800 community volunteers, and helped reduce the electric bills of California's low-income families by up to 75%. Our recent regional office addition in the Central Valley is up to speed and a fully operational office. This is the fourth regional office in addition our Headquarters office and our offices in the San Francisco Bay Area, Greater Los Angeles, and San Diego.

In 2004, GRID Alternatives launched it's Solar Affordable Housing Program and installed two solar electric systems. In 2010 we are on track to install 300 solar electric systems in a single year. We are thrilled about our growth and ability to increase access to the economic and environmental benefits of solar energy for California's low income families.


GRID Alternatives has been very busy and have continued to grow in the past several months. Solarthon 2009 was a great success, raising over $100,000 to support renewable energy for low-income families statewide! Follow the link to see pictures of recent projects throughout California.



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Organization Information

GRID Alternatives

Location: Oakland, CA - USA
Website: http:/​/​
GRID Alternatives
Project Leader:
Susie Chang
San Francisco, CA United States

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