Community leaders joined the Board of Directors, staff and girls of Girls Inc. Carpinteria on Thursday, March 14 to celebrate the completed installation of the new 30 kilowatt solar electric system, and to thank the Community Environment Council (CEC) and Asteri Solar for their investment in the campus.
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria’s new photovoltaic solar electric system is expected to provide approximately half of the organization’s electricity for the next 25 years.
The system was installed as part of CEC’s Solarize Nonprofit pilot project, a program designed to help local nonprofits go solar and run off renewable energy without an upfront cost. The program grew out of CEC’s residential Solarize program, which has helped 735 homeowners go solar. The installation at Girls Inc. was completed in partnership between CEC; Asteri Solar, who provided the funding for the project; and local solar installer Sun Pacific Solar Electric, Inc.
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria is the second nonprofit to complete installation through the program, following the Santa Barbara Bicycle Coalition.
The organization is projected to save over $300,000 on their future electricity bills by using solar power through the Solarize Nonprofit program. The savings will be directed back into the programs that Girls Inc. brings to the community by inspiring girls to reach their full potential.
“The solar installation project is part of our Board of Directors’ long-range planning and broad visioning for the future of the Carpinteria campus, and an example of the collaborations we want to foster with other community partners,” said Lisa Murphy Rivas, interim executive director at Girls Inc. of Carpinteria. “The organization will greatly benefit from significant savings in our operating expenses and the ability to utilize clean, renewable energy.
“The Girls Inc. of Carpinteria girls on campus today will remember being with the organization the year we started taking steps for the future of our campus and the environment! We extend our gratitude to CEC, Asteri Solar and Sun Pacific for their work in making this possible,” Rivas added.
The solar project is part of a campus-wide effort at Girls Inc. of Carpinteria to reduce energy demand and upgrade the facility. The organization has also invested in new lighting throughout the facility to reduce their energy demand.
“We are delighted to support Girls Inc. of Carpinteria and their important mission,” said Matt Riley of Asteri Solar. “They have been an amazing partner on this project, and we look forward to reducing their operating costs with solar power.”
Asteri Solar launched in 2018 to support the community through impact investing in solar for nonprofit organizations.
The ribbon cutting ceremony included representatives from CEC, Girls Inc. of Carpinteria, Sun Pacific, Carpinteria Mayor Wade Nomura, and representatives from the offices of Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, Assemblymember Monique Limón, Congressman Salud Carbajal and Supervisor Das Williams.
“Carpinteria has always been at the forefront of sustainability efforts and the newly completed solar system at Girls Inc. of Carpinteria is a great example,” said Carpinteria Mayor Wade Nomura.
“We are proud to honor Girls Inc. of Carpinteria for doing their part to reduce greenhouse gases and create a sustainable future for us all,” said Kadie McShirley, of Supervisor Das Williams’ office.
While Solarize Nonprofit has already identified several nonprofits for funding through the pilot, there may be additional capacity for the program. Eligible nonprofits must own their buildings or be in long-term leases and have facilities suitable for solar. Nonprofits may apply at SolarizeNonprofit.org.
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria serves more than 700 girls each year, helping them navigate gender, economic and social barriers and grow into healthy, educated and independent adults. To learn more, please visit www.girlsinc-carp.org.
Photos by Sarita Relis Photography
Since 1970, CEC has led the Santa Barbara region – and at times California and the nation – in creative solutions to some of the toughest environmental problems. CEC pioneers real life solutions in areas with the most impact on climate change. Our programs – including the Santa Barbara Earth Day Festival – provide pathways to clean vehicles, solar energy, resilient food systems, and reduction of single-use plastic. Our commitment to excellence has made CEC one of only three nonprofits in Santa Barbara County to earn the highest possible ratings from both Guidestar and Charity Navigator. Find CEC on the web at www.CECSB.org and on Facebook.com/CECSB, Instagram.com/CEC_SB and Twitter.com/CECSB.
About Girls Inc. of Carpinteria
Girls Inc. of Carpinteria is a member of Girls Incorporated®, a nonprofit organization that inspires all girls to be strong, smart, and bold. With local roots dating to 1864 and national status since 1945, Girls Inc. has responded to the changing needs of girls through research-based programs and public education efforts that empower girls to understand, value, and assert their rights. We provide programs for girls 6 to 18 years old that focus on science, math, and technology; health and sexuality; economic and financial literacy; sports skills; leadership and advocacy; and media literacy. To learn more, become a volunteer or offer support, please visit www.girlsinc-carp.org/.