April 23, 2024

350.org & Green Workers Alliance Respond to Biden’s Solar Investments

Virginia, U.S. – President Biden marked Earth Day by announcing a $7 billion investment in solar energy projects nationwide, through the Environmental Protection Agency’s “solar for all” program. Biden said that the program will create 200,000 new jobs. Monday also marked the launch of the American Climate Corps program, with job applications now open for young people looking to work in clean energy and climate resilience. The administration is planning other announcements throughout Earth Week.

Phuonganh (Ann) Nguyen, solar worker & member of Green Workers Alliance, said:

“As a solar worker and community member, I have a vested interest in wanting to call for transparency and assurance that this investment will spur good-paying and safe jobs in solar. I am part of a growing movement of renewable energy workers who are committed to advancing the entire industry to save our planet and secure prosperous futures for our families. Our daily concerns about finances, safety at work, and future employment can be overwhelming. Utility-scale solar workers like me often travel long distances for work and face numerous hazards, including wildlife, overheating, unpredictable weather, and unbalanced terrains. My colleagues working in residential solar face risks like falling from significant heights, heat exhaustion, and dehydration.

“Fairness demands that employees receive a just share of profits including benefits and job security. However, our employer and contractors’ financial dealings are often shrouded in secrecy and are not accountable to workers. How will this administration be accountable to us? As a member of GWA, we are committed to creating better job opportunities in the renewable energy sector. We are eager to continue our work with the help of government support, which would allow us to expand our reach and achieve our goals.”

Jeff Ordower, North America Director for 350.org, said:

“This is a huge second step towards investing in a just transition to renewable energy, including for workers. The first was the Inflation Reduction Act, which funds the ‘solar for all’ program. But just like with the Inflation Reduction Act, the administration will now need to make sure that the pledge is actually implemented, and implemented justly. This needs to mean that all Americans, including the most vulnerable families, have access to solar. The utility-scale solar must be used for the people, not for big tech or cryptocurrency. These funds are a significant and hopeful sign, but they need to be implemented fairly.”


Media Contact:
Melanie Smith / [email protected]