by Rebecca Carter
Categories: Home, People.


Imagine what a gift free electricity would be. Then imagine the impact that it makes on families with lower-income. Plus, it’s good for the environment. That’s exactly what Edward Norton‘s BP Solar Neighbors is all about. By teaming celebrities up with families in need, there is plenty of sunshine to go around.

We recently called out the Solar Neighbors program, as we often here it talked about, but hadn’t seen new information coming in for some time. But it seems the issue is with the website, not the organization.

On Monday, Enterprise announced that Jacob’s Place, a sustainable multi-family (63 units to be exactly) affordable housing development in the South Bronx was complete. The building is equipped with a solar electric system, courtesy of the BP Solar Neighbors program. It is an 11 kilowatt, 64-panel electric power system that will power common area lighting, ventilation and elevators.

Of course, the BP Solar Neighbors program works like this: When a celebrity purchases solar panels for their home, BP donates a similar system to a low-income family. So who purchased panels to allow for this system for Jacob’s Place to be installed? None other than Ecorazzi favorite Owen Wilson.

Edward Norton noted, “Many people perceive environmentally friendly practices as costly and available only to wealthy people, but Jacob’s Place is a great example of the many ways sustainability is being achieved on low-income homes in places like the Bronx. The solar panels we provided through the Solar Neighbors program are only one element of the solutions that dynamic groups like Fordham Bedford are bringing into the equation.”

Another nice thing about Jacob’s Place? It includes 6 classrooms for early childhood development and 7 units reserved for formerly homeless tenants.

We’d like to send our congrats to all parties involved. Sounds like a job well done.

About Rebecca Carter

Rebecca Carter is the Co-Founder of Ecorazzi. Rebecca was recently featured in the book Hot, Rich, and Green. She is one of 70 eco-achievers featured in Glamour magazine in April 2009, named Best of Green 2010 by Miami Magazine and Best Environmentalist by Miami New Times Best of 2008. She's raising a couple of little boys in Miami and speaks English & Spanish. Find out more at Follow Rebecca on Twitter: @rebeccacarter

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  • Judy Pokras

    Good for Ed Norton and good for Owen Wilson. They’re real heroes for taking part in the Solar Neighbors Program. They’re helping the environment and helping poor people make their own contribution to the environment. Bravo, guys!

  • deena

    That’s awesome! Didn’t know anything about it before now. Thanks for posting!

  • tom walkman
    looking for distributor

  • John

    Sounds like Ed has set up a good cause. I would like to see BP donate for every so much KW sold. There are lots of other people putting solar up too.

  • Pingback: » What does Edward Norton, Owen Wilson and British Petroleum (BP) Have in Common? Solar Energy - Planetary Prosperity()

  • Jane G. Anderson

    Am hoping to install solar roof panels on my small ranch house south of Wilmington, DE, but as a clinical social worker in her 60’s I would have great difficulty affording them. Any suggestions would be most welcome. Thanks!!!

  • Uncle B

    Somewhere out there is a working mans Shanty, Solar paneled, LED lighted, small super insulated , passively solar heated, and practical,a small garden, some aquaponics, compost and bio-gassed humanure for the entire neighborhood! and a refuge for the daily wage earner that beats his current future of bread-lines, soup-kitchens, hoovervilles, Tent cities and poverty as part of the great American Unemployables, the ‘Legacy Workers” of jobs gone to Asia! America you are beautiful, but the plight of your forgotten ones is not! Please help these poor American folk, they are part of the picture that is America!