White House honors co-founder of solar nonprofit powering Richmond homes

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The co-founder of the nonprofit that has been installing solar systems throughout Richmond since 2007 was honored at the White House on Thursday.
GRID Alternatives co-founder Tim Sears honored at White House Thursday.

The co-founder of the nonprofit that has been installing solar systems throughout Richmond since 2007 was honored at the White House on Thursday.

GRID Alternatives co-founder Tim Sears was one of ten people named as a White House Champion of Change for Solar Deployment.

The honor went to individuals who are spurring solar development across the U.S.

GRID Alternatives, based in Oakland, installs solar panels at little to no cost in homes throughout the state and in Colorado. In Richmond, the nonprofit has teamed with RichmondBUILD and Solar Richmond to install systems in 133 homes, spokeswoman Julian Foley said Thursday.

Those homes receive a combined 322 kilowatts of power and will save an estimated $3 million in energy costs over the lifetime of the systems, Foley said.

GRID Alternatives partners with whole communities to provide the labor and funding, including from corporate sponsors such as longtime funder Chevron Richmond. The city of Richmond has also contributed a significant amount to the local effort, according to GRID Alternatives’ website.

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