Construction and training is up and running at Wilmington's Harbor City Community Job Center!

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May 15, 2019
Construction happens on a flat roof, with a freeway in the background

Nonprofit Program clients from the Instituto de Educación Popular del Sur de California (IDEPSCA) are partnered with our Workforce Development team and Energy for All to make May a great month for solar in Wilmington! Last week, we mounted the roof of IDEPSCA's Harbor City Community Job Center for the first time to begin installing three kilowatts of clean energy. Combined with two batteries, these panels will be an important new source of sustainable power benefitting a local community near the Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles.

Besides the important environmental justice case to be made in this neighborhood, IDEPSCA and GRID Alternatives are excited about this project because of the direct impacts we are seeing right away. For instance, this project offers IDEPSCA sensible options for operating in a greener way. For the past few years, the trailer where the Job Center gets its electricity has been off the grid, powered by a small generator; dirty fuels consumed by this generator have had adverse effects on onsite air quality, especially in conjunction with surrounding sources of pollution like the Harbor Freeway and the shipping industry. With GRID solar, IDEPSCA will happily retire their generator and channel extra money into their programs that help workers.

Two workers lay in a solar panel
This center is a place where workers gain employment, practice skills, and seek out resources—and with the addition of solar, more money will be available for that awesome work.

Meanwhile, those same workers are putting sweat equity into the Job Center project by becoming first-time installers of solar! Solar Installation Supervisors will work with selected workers from IDEPSCA programs repeatedly, helping them with the basics of photovoltaic installation. Someday these valuable skills, encompassing everything from electrical work to safety, will position individuals served by the Job Center in Wilmington to make more money and gain more education.

With our system scheduled for completion on May 17, we're looking forward to flipping the switch on IDEPSCA's solar and storage and celebrating the success of our friends in Wilmington! Interested in coming to our celebration day in late May, which will be open to the public with free site tours? Contact GRID Alternatives Greater Los Angeles.

IDEPSCA's solar and storage project was generously made possible by almost a hundred donors to our year-end-campaign. We extend huge thanks to everyone who fundraised and contributed, Bank of the West, and the Office of Supervisor Janice Hahn for funding this milestone project.