Bill McKibben, author and environmentalist, will make a road trip with Maine-based Unity College students as part of the Put Solar On It tour. Making the trip with McKibben and the students will be one of the solar panels former President Carter installed at the White House in 1979. The tour will start on September 7 and the White House will be its last stop on September 10.
While appearing on the Late Show With David Letterman, McKibben said, “We’re taking them back to the White House…It’s time to put these back up.”
Solar companies, headed by Sungevity, started a campaign called Globama, a few weeks ago as part of a campaign to get the Obama administration to install solar panels at the White House. The website contains a petition to Obama. Website visitors can even link their social network accounts (including Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube) to the campaign.
Sungevity offered the White House free rooftop solar panels. The company says its 102 panel, 17.85 kilowatt solar power system would reduce White House energy bills by 81 percent, around $102,000 a year, or $1,610 a month. If the Obama administration is not comfortable accepting a free system, Sungevity will offer 10-year lease of system for $537 a month, which includes maintenance.
President Obama signed an executive order requiring federal agencies to increase energy efficiency in its almost 500,000 buildings on October 9, 2009. The executive order required federal agencies to implement a 2030 net-zero-energy building requirement.
The White House is one of the federal government’s buildings, and to date it is not powered by solar energy as it was during the Carter’s presidency. President Ronald Reagan had the panels removed in 1985, after letting Carter’s solar tax credits expire.
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