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Organization in California Offers Low-income Residents Energy Efficiency Retrofits and Green Employment Training

Nonprofit solar energy provider brings some sunshine to low-income residents in the Inland Empire

May 20, 2012 | By Steven Cuevas

A Solarthon group retrofits a house in 2009. Some families in the Inland Empire community of San Jacinto are having their homes outfitted with new solar energy systems thanks to a group of community volunteers.

Some families in the Inland Empire community of San Jacinto are having their homes outfitted with new solar energy systems thanks to a group of community volunteers, as well as a nonprofit solar provider from the Bay Area.
The aim of GRID Alternatives is to transform the houses of low-income residents into energy-efficient homes. GRID also gives job seekers in low-income areas hands-on experience with solar system installation.
GRID’s Inland Empire director Bambi Tran said it’s already trained over 8,000 people across California “so that they can go out there and actually get jobs in the green industry.”
“We are working throughout the Inland Empire and the state of California,” she said. “In fact, we have done over 150 installations in the county of Riverside. We are helping low-income families achieve about a 75 percent reduction in their electricity bill while also providing job training opportunities.”
Crews will convert eight homes in downtown San Jacinto this weekend. Organizers will hold another Solarthon event in San Diego next month and in Los Angeles later this summer.

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