Emilie Richardson

Photographer
   
Solar Energy Warriors
Location: Minneapolis
Nationality: American
Biography: Emilie Richardson is a New York based photographer available for assignments worldwide. Originally from Minnesota, she began her career shooting for local papers and documenting life in the Midwest. She has worked for non-profit and news agencies... MORE
Public Story
Solar Energy Warriors
Copyright Emilie Richardson 2022
Updated Dec 2021
Topics Energy, Environment, Photography, Photojournalism, Spotlight
Native Americans are ten times more likely to not have electricity than the national average and, as people of color far less likely to have solar power, after 20th century rural electrification bypassed some of their communities, studies have shown.

To help build tribal energy independence, training group Solar Energy International has partnered with non-profit Red Cloud Renewable to teach students to assemble off-grid systems for isolated homes or grid-connected arrays to cut bills.

These "solar warriors" hope to supply power to areas like the Navajo Nation, where around 25% of homes lack electricity, and cut energy bills in reservations such as Pine Ridge, which has the poorest county in the United States.

Another goal is to create a Native American solar workforce to build big arrays in places like the Pine Ridge Reservation and teach solar skills to the next generation. 
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