Earth Quaker Action Team (EQAT) launched the Power Local Green Jobs campaign in September 2015 to push Pennsylvania’s largest utility, PECO, to make a significant shift toward solar, prioritizing job creation in Black and Brown communities, which have been most affected by the fossil fuel economy. Within months, PECO set up “Solar Stakeholder Collaborative” meetings that helped the company realize the level of interest in the region, as well as the grievances of solar contractors. Based on those meetings, PECO has eased the solar application process, upgraded the grid to be more solar-ready, and hired a team to work specifically on solar.
PECO also made a significant investment in the Philadelphia Energy Authority’s solar work and donated $100,000 to a North Philadelphia-based job training program, though only some of that money went to solar training. PECO announced recently that it’s seeking proposals for local solar projects. While EQAT is pleased with this movement, much more action is needed, especially given the urgency of climate change and environmental racism.
Learn more: Earth Quaker Action Team