The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Interior funded the project, along with local development officials. The system is expected to offset 109,500 gallons of diesel per year, according to SolarCity.
The move comes days after shareholders gave Elon Musk the go-ahead to merge his two companies. He’s the largest shareholder in both firms and serves as chief executive of Tesla and chairman of SolarCity. The $2.23 billion deal is meant to marry Tesla’s battery technology with SolarCity’s photovoltaic panels and roof singles, creating, in theory, a one-stop shop for zero-emissions cars and home energy systems.
“This is part of making history. This project will help lessen the carbon footprint of the world,”said Keith Ahsoon, a resident whose family owns one of the food stores on Ta’u, in the blog post on SolarCity’s website. “Living on an island, you experience global warming firsthand. Beach erosions and other noticeable changes are a part of life here. It’s a serious problem, and this project will hopefully set a good example for everyone else to follow.”
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