The first family’s residence will soon be partially powered by the sun, Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced today.
The rooftop solar installation will heat hot water for the first family’s residence and supplement power for America’s most famous house. It is expected to be up and operating by the spring of 2011, showing that “American solar technologies are available, reliable and ready for installation in homes throughout the country,’’ according to the administration.
A group of environmentalists who wanted solar panels installed on the White House were able to meet with administration staffers today, but they did not get a commitment for a solar array at the first family’s residence.
The team representing people who’d signed a “Put Solar On The White House” petition included students from Unity College in Maine which has been using a solar array installed on the White House during the Carter Administration. The panels Jimmy Carter had installed were dismantled, and ultimately relocated to Unity College, during the Reagan Administration. The Put Solar On It group carried a remnant of that array to the White House to help make their point that President Obama could again light the way.