NC GreenPower

Women’s History Month – the Sun Queen

Historically, women have been underrepresented in STEM. Although many STEM fields advanced significantly in the mid-1900s, for women, careers were still considered taboo. With March being Women’s History Month, it seemed fitting to highlight a woman whose commitment to a more sustainable lifestyle laid the groundwork for modern solar technology: Dr. Maria Telkes. Originally from Hungary, Telkes received her PhD from the University of Budapest in 1920. After coming to the United States to join a family member in Ohio, she began to find her niche in the sciences by developing and researching systems that were less reliant on fossil fuels. She is credited with inventing the concept of a solar-powered heating system for the home. In collaboration with the …[ MORE ]

Posted in Environment, Uncategorized, Women in STEM on March 8, 2021

Black History Month – Hazel O’Leary

As February comes to a close, we wanted to take an opportunity to celebrate Black History Month and reflect on the countless individuals who have driven and grown the renewable energy sector. One particularly noteworthy Black woman we’d like to highlight is The Honorable Hazel O’Leary. With an early career in criminal law, O’Leary created a reputation as a progressive, environmentally conscious do-gooder. She even served as the executive vice president at a Minnesota public utilities power company. In 1993 as President Bill Clinton was looking to fill the position of the seventh U.S. Secretary of Energy, O’Leary was a natural choice. She was unanimously approved by the Senate and became the first woman and first African American to hold …[ MORE ]

Posted in Uncategorized on February 24, 2021

Green Ideas for your Valentine

Valentine’s Day is one of those commercialized, overly advertised holidays where you feel obligated to lavish gifts on a significant other. But if you just want to tell someone you love how much you appreciate them in your life, and don’t want to be wasteful, check out these green heart ideas! Choose local flowers. Imported flowers need to be flown or trucked in from states away, AND refrigerated during their journey, so we definitely recommend picking up your loved one flowers or a flowering plant from a local shop or one of the NC Farm Fresh retail nurseries and garden centers. Store-bought, imported flowers usually come wrapped up in cellophane — which is not recyclable. Or try an ethically conscious online retailer …[ MORE ]

Posted in Sustainability on February 12, 2020

Tips for a Sustainable Thanksgiving

The holidays are just about here, which usually means lots of food, travel, family, and friends. But they don’t have to be wasteful. Here are some ways to make this Thanksgiving more sustainable! Plan Ahead: Americans throw away a lot of food — approximately 165 billion dollars’ worth annually. And turkey waste from Thanksgiving alone accounts for 200 million pounds of that. To stay on top of your portions this year, consider a potluck-style meal or try to gauge how much food you’ll need based on your guest count. And compost and save leftovers when you can! Shop Local: Before rushing out to eat yourself into a Thanksgiving-inspired food coma, think about where your food comes from. When working through …[ MORE ]

Posted in Sustainability on November 25, 2019

Energy-Sucking Devices Are Needlessly Costing You and the Environment

October may be known for Halloween, but it’s also Energy Awareness Month! With both of these in mind, we figured it would be a great time to share a simple and not-so-scary way to support the environment while also saving money on your energy bill each month: unplug! Many of today’s electronics, appliances and devices consume electricity even when seemingly turned off or not in use. These energy vampires, sometimes called idle or phantom loads, can add over $150 to your annual energy bill and equal the electricity supplied by 50 large power plants! So even though that smartphone charger is not connected, you and the environment are still paying for electricity it is using. But do not fear. Once …[ MORE ]

Posted in Uncategorized on October 24, 2019

Kimberly Walsh Joins Our Team as an Administrative Assistant

We are excited to welcome Kimberly Walsh as an administrative assistant. Kimberly was born in St. Louis, Missouri, but spent most of her childhood and young adulthood in Greensboro, North Carolina. She graduated from UNC Greensboro, where she majored in environmental studies and international studies. Kimberly has long been environmentally conscious. At 8, she successfully encouraged her family to start recycling at home, and by 13, she had a pretty good idea of what she wanted to pursue in the future: an opportunity that would allow her to integrate her love of the environment and education. Thanks to a diverse friend group growing up, she also developed a fascination with learning about other belief systems and religions, and she had …[ MORE ]

Posted in Uncategorized on October 3, 2019

Bringing STEM Education to Five More North Carolina Schools

Since April 2015, our Solar Schools program has been able to bring solar and energy education to more than 23,000 K-12 students across 27 North Carolina schools and 22 counties, and we recently announced the five newest awardees: The Center of Applied Sciences and Technology (COAST), Bolivia – Brunswick County Charles P. Murray Middle School, Wilmington – New Hanover County Hurley Elementary School, Salisbury – Rowan County Peachland-Polkton Elementary School, Peachland – Anson County Sunny View Elementary School, Mill Spring – Polk County NC GreenPower Solar Schools uses a portion of the donations we receive to provide matching grants for small photovoltaic (PV) systems (3-5 kilowatts) at schools. In addition to the solar array, the schools receive a weather station, …[ MORE ]

Posted in North Carolina, Solar Schools on September 20, 2019

School Stories: Cove Creek School

SCHOOL FACTS: County: Watauga Type of School: Public Grade Levels: PreK-8 School Profile: Rural Number of Students: 290 For this month’s featured school, we are highlighting Cove Creek School in Vilas, North Carolina. Cove Creek is a PreK-8 public school with a passion for sustainability that it takes very seriously. The school is recognized as a North Carolina Green School of Excellence and has a Green Team of parents, teachers and community members who make sure that environmental education is at the forefront of students’ experiences. Cove Creek also recently received the everGREEN Award for Sustainability from the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce for 2019. Cove Creek was first selected as an alternate school for the 2017 NC GreenPower Solar …[ MORE ]

Posted in North Carolina, Solar Schools on August 16, 2019

Celebrating National Bike Month

Happy National Bike Month! If you’ve been following our social media channels, you’ve likely seen that we’ve been celebrating this month by highlighting North Carolina’s vibrant cyclist population. From meet-ups to advocacy groups, bikers play an essential role in leading the charge in carbon neutral transportation. Within our own office, there are several employees who use alternative forms of transportation for their daily commute. Kelsy Green (on left), project manager at our parent nonprofit, Advanced Energy, is an avid cycler and regularly rides her bike to the office. For the past two years, she has started and ended her day with a three-mile ride on Raleigh’s Greenways and Centennial Campus. Kelsy recounts, “I was really excited when I purchased a …[ MORE ]

Posted in North Carolina, Sustainability on May 16, 2019

Featured Volunteer – Jairo M.

NC GreenPower is incredibly grateful for our volunteers! Our “Featured Volunteer” series will recognize some of our do-gooders for their dedication and service. Our May featured volunteer hails from Durham, NC. Jairo is a student at Riverside High School and has a passion for preserving the environment. Having lived in multiple cities in North Carolina and Florida, Jairo is well-versed in the East Coast’s developing renewable energy scene. Jairo first discovered NC GreenPower through our volunteer listing featured on Activate Good’s website. He explains, “I like to interact with others, and this is helping me become more engaged in conversations and get used to speaking and explaining to others, as many have questions or interesting stories that they like to …[ MORE ]

Posted in Environment, North Carolina, Volunteer on May 10, 2019