American Red Cross donates solar panels to 150+ schools post-María
The Puerto Rico Department of Education has reportedly relied on more than 18,000 hours of solar energy over the past year through a contribution of nearly $1.5 million in panels that the nonprofit has installed in more than 150 public schools, it stated.
These installations at schools that serve as shelters were part of the long-term recovery plan developed by the American Red Cross with donations received after Hurricane María, said Lee Feliciano, regional executive of the American Red Cross Puerto Rico Chapter.
“As soon as the response phase of our disaster operation ended, we focused on developing recovery projects that will provide immediate and long-term solutions to address some of the more pressing needs of communities,” she said.
The solar technology and backup battery systems also prevented 3,500 tons of CO2 emissions, produced energy savings equivalent to 77,500 trees planted and avoided 139,000 power cuts, the nonprofit stated. “The energized spaces in the school campus are the essential areas like the school cafeteria, the shelter area, water pumps and water heater,” said Feliciano.