white house solar panels
by Michael dEstries
Categories: Causes, Environment.

After nearly three years of “procurement phase” limbo, the Obama Administration this week quietly began installing solar panels on the roof of the White House.

You read that correctly. It’s actually happening. But shhhh…nobody is supposed to know yet.

The Washington Post snagged some info from an anonymous White House official who said “the install is in process” and is “a part of an energy retrofit that will improve the overall energy efficiency of the building.”

carter solar

President Jimmy Carter showing off the White House solar panels in 1979.

But serious, f**king solar panels on the roof of the White House! This is almost as awesome as the first time President Carter did it – and then Reagan took them down – and then Bush added some to a maintenance shed and some solar thermal units to heat the White House pool – but didn’t really tell anyone. Or nobody noticed. Not sure.

Meanwhile, climate activist Bill McKibben, whose group 350.org helped to spearhead the initial push to go solar at 1600 PA. Ave., is the feeling the same sense of relief as we are that this is actually, shockingly, happening.

“Better late than never–in truth, no one should ever have taken down the panels Jimmy Carter put on the roof way back in 1979,” he said. “But it’s very good to know that once again the country’s most powerful address will be drawing some of that power from the sun.”

According to the LA Times, the administration said the solar equipment is “American-made,” but declined to give any other details, including the cost, the name of the vendor, how much energy it will save or when it will come on line.

We should get an official announcement of sorts shortly. But for now, let’s celebrate that the panels are back!

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

View all posts by Michael dEstries →
  • http://www.beethedesigner.com/ Billie Bryan

    This has truly brightened my gloomy Friday morning! (Oh, yes, pun so intended.) This is AMAZING.