In over 125 places around the world yesterday, communities came together to occupy the rooftops of an important place in their community. The actions were a part of a day of action from our partners at Solar Mosaic, and were designed to kick off local initiatives to use their model of crowd-funding to get solar energy onto the rooftops of schools, community centers and other important community buildings.
As the organizers have said, “It’s no coincidence that the financial industry and the fossil-fuel industry are very intertwined, and together are creating our dependence on fossil fuels. What we want to do is use this Occupy momentum and focus on on-the-ground solutions, what we can do right now, without waiting for politicians.”
In the end, we’ll need action on both fronts – to build a movement powerful enough to demand politicians stop caving to fossil fuel companies, while also building the alternatives ourselves in our communities. Yesterday’s events were a beautiful demonstration of powerful, practical, and real change on the ground – here are a few more excerpts from communities participating:
- Jay Huebner, a member of the Unitarian Universalist Church of Jacksonville, Florida said, “Our church is committed to integrating an Earth-oriented spirituality into our worship. We hope that by forming a solar cooperative, we can use this experience as a teaching tool and give congregation members the courage to go solar on their own houses, farms and businesses.” Jay thanked Solar Mosaic and our partners for helping his church get started.
- All the way across the Pacific Ocean, in Bucharest, Romania, Lavinia Andrei has decided to use #Occupy Rooftops to demonstrate that it is possible for normal, everyday people to create renewable energy. Together with over 20 friends, she’s done an inventory of buildings in her community that could benefit from solar. When asked why she decided to participate, Lavinia answered, “Renewable energy should be an instrument for individuals and small communities to improve their standard of life, reduce their energy costs and live in harmony with the environment.”
- Further east, in Yerevan, Georgia, Kati Kiria is working with a team to put solar panels on a kindergarden for disabled children. She is inspired by the need to address climate change and is eager to create solutions in her own community.
- Back in Dallas, Texas, a newly-founded company called Dynamo Labs held an open forum in their “CoHabitat” office space. Dynamo developed an energy efficiency app for Apple devices and, their CEO, Blake Burris is the founding organizer of Cleanweb Hackaton–a conference to use IT to address resource constraints around energy, food and water.