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article imageJimmy Carter has built solar farm that will power half of Plains

By Karen Graham     Jul 13, 2017 in Environment
Plains - Former President Jimmy Carter has built a 10-acre solar farm that will power half of his hometown of Plains, Georgia. He has also installed 324 solar panels on his Presidential Library.
Carter, our 39th president, leased 10 acres of land near his home in Plains, Georgia, and working with Atlanta, Georgia-based SolAmerica Energy, a solar, development, and construction firm, began building a 1.3 MW solar project.
The solar project was completed in February this year and will annually supply more than 55 million kilowatt-hours of clean, renewable energy to the residents of Plains, slightly more than half their total yearly electricity consumption, according to Clean Technica.
At the ground-breaking ceremony on January 31, 2017, Carter said: "Rosalynn and I are very pleased to be part of SolAmerica’s exciting solar project in Plains. Distributed, clean energy generation is critical to meeting growing energy needs around the world while fighting the effects of climate change," said Carter. "I am encouraged by the tremendous progress that solar and other clean energy solutions have made in recent years and expect those trends to continue."
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Mother Nature Network
However, Carter didn't stop after the solar farm was completed. In June of this year, he had 324 solar panels installed on top of the Jimmy Carter Presidential Library.
It's not just a story about a solar farm
With as many solar farms being constructed in the U.S. and around the world today, one more solar farm might not get much notice, however, Jimmy Carter's solar farm is a testament to the man himself and his tenacity in advancing renewable energy in this nation.
As President, Carter created the Department of Energy and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and signed the Public Utility Regulatory Act, all catalysts for the advancement of renewable energy. Back in 1979, during the U.S. energy crisis, Carter had 32 solar panels installed on top of the White House to power a newly installed solar water heater.
Jimmy Carter and solar panels on White House.
Jimmy Carter and solar panels on White House.
U.S. Government
He addressed the nation: “A generation from now, this solar heater can either be a curiosity, a museum piece, an example of a road not taken, or it can be just a small part of one of the greatest and most exciting adventures ever undertaken by the American people.”
It's important to remember that renewable energy really wasn't on people's minds in the late 1970s, we were more concerned with OPEC's oil embargo and filling our gas tanks up than energy and climate change, but Carter was far ahead of his time. And after he left office, he continued to work at ensuring those 32 solar panels became part of the much bigger story renewable energy is today.
Part of the 354 MW SEGS solar complex in northern San Bernardino County  California.
Part of the 354 MW SEGS solar complex in northern San Bernardino County, California.
U.S. Bureau of Land Management
Jimmy Carter is just one man, and he has a mission. But all great revolutions start with a lone figure and then they grow. This is what is taking place today in the renewable energy sector as businesses, corporations, tech companies, and individuals embrace renewable energy. And energy is power - For the people - all working together to create a sustainable future.
More about Jimmy carter, Solar farm, plains georgia, SolAmerica Energy, Environment
 
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