Looks like President Obama has finally given in to the pressure — the White House is about to go solar – again. In the 1970’s President Jimmy Carter had solar panels installed on the roof of the first home only to have President Ronald Reagan remove them later. Coalitions — like this one — have been pushing for Obama to bring solar back to the first residence as a sign of his commitment to renewable energy. The new solar array is expected to be installed by next spring and will heat the first family’s supply of hot water as well as supplement power for some of the the first family’s energy needs.
We’ve been wondering for the past 20 months when the solar panels would be installed – after all, if the Obamas decided to plant an organic garden at the White House right upon settling down in their new home, it seemed only fitting that they expand their own home’s green cred however they could while they pushed others to do the same. It looks like Secretary of Energy Steven Chu was part of the driving force in this green tech push as he was the one who announced the plans this morning on an environmentally focused conference call with national non-profit leaders.
Perhaps it was the success of the organic garden coupled with the trouble that the White House is having passing climate legislation that pushed them to bite the bullet. The old parental adage, “do what I say, not what I do,” seems not to have been working for the President, so perhaps his decision to walk the walk will help push Congress to pass comprehensive energy and climate legislation that we can all be proud of. For now, we’ll have to be proud that our first residence is finally a beacon of hope for the country’s renewable energy future.