Last week, we presented GEO’s Annual Green Achievement Awards in four categories – Business, Academic, Community/Government, and Nonprofit – plus two Lifetime Achievement Awards. Since 2018, we have focused on honorees who are active statewide or who are leaders in the area where we host the awards ceremony!
Green Energy Ohio has had a long association with efforts to promote solar schools. Ohio Schools Going Solar began in the spring of 1999 - even before GEO came into existence - with the installation of a 2-kilowatt photovoltaic array at Bluffsview Elementary School in the Worthington School District.
This month we are sharing a program that has been underway since 2015, and continues today. Beginning five years ago, GEO and its business members have partnered with the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Corrections (ODRC) to train offenders through the “Understanding Photovoltaics” program and endeavored to place them in the Ohio solar industry after release.
We know that clean energy creates jobs. Growth in the renewable energy, energy efficiency, and clean transportation industries has outpaced other economic sectors in recent years. We also know that the industry took a hit in the recent pandemic shutdown, with as much as a 17 percent job loss nationwide. Given demand for energy that reduces costs and addresses climate change, forecasters expect a rebound in the employment numbers as the economy reopens.
At the 2003 Ohio State Fair, First Lady Hope Taft brought the idea of a photovoltaic or solar electric system at the Ohio Governor’s Residence to Green Energy Ohio. A "Green Team" of GEO volunteers and members of the Ohio Clean Energy Business Association (OCEBA) immediately began preparing a plan to install a grid-tied solar system with battery back-up power and an educational display using all Ohio-made products and services.
In June 2012, Green Energy Ohio (GEO) and Clean Fuels Ohio (CFO) collaborated on a "Tour de Sol", an electric vehicle road rally, visiting green businesses and renewable energy charging stations, spreading the word that Ohioans wanted EVs and wanted to be able to charge them using renewable energy.
Using renewable energy as a tool for economic development and job creation was the theme of the national SOLAR 2007 conference hosted by the American Solar Energy Society (ASES) and Green Energy Ohio at the Cleveland Convention Center in July 2007.
There is no doubt that the Crib data represented a unique contribution to the possibility of a fresh water wind energy installation in Lake Erie. Green Energy Ohio is proud to have played a central part in the project from conception to construction to data collection and analysis.