Solar Energy for Sandy Survivors

GRID Alternatives Expansion to New Jersey/New York
Jul 20, 2014 9:00 AM ET

Environmental Forum

Last October, Jolyn Bright looked up at her roof in Asbury Park, NJ to see a team of employee volunteers from Wells Fargo’s Green Team installing the first-ever GRID Alternatives solar energy system on the Eastern seaboard. That day, it was just under a year ago that a tree during Hurricane Sandy came crashing through the roof of Jolyn’s rented home, leaving her, like so many others along the coast, homeless. She and her husband Warren went to stay with her mother while the house was being fixed, but when they returned it was full of mold. Instead of fixing it, their landlord suggested that they move to a new location.

Soon after, though, their luck turned, and they got the opportunity to buy their own home through Affordable Housing Alliance (AHA), a local housing nonprofit that Wells Fargo supports. When I heard that GRID was ready to come East, I was thrilled to be able to connect my friends at AHA to our friends at GRID. This helped forge a growing relationship that would ultimately help this community become more sustainable.

What makes my job so rewarding is having the knowledge that the solar energy system our team members installed last October with the help of GRID is expected to save the Brights about $350 in electrical bills in its first year. Jolyn never thought she would be able to have her own place, but she and Warren are now living in a beautiful sustainable home while saving energy and money.


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