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Solar Energy & Environmental Justice in East Bay

This course listing applies to a Spring 2016 course. To find current courses, check out the Find a Course page.

Spring 2016
ERG 98 / 198
2 Unit(s)

Human friendly URL (OBSOLETE)


About the Course:

This course was designed to complement the Solar Spring Break Program put on through a partnership with the Student Environmental Resource Center at UC Berkeley (SERC) and GRID Alternatives, however the course is open to all students interested in the curriculum topics. In previous years, a team of students was selected and taken on an intensive one-week trip over spring break to  qualifying households in underrepresented parts of Oakland. Here they were trained by GRID Alternatives to install residential solar energy systems. The intent of this DeCal is to to enrich the educational portion of the team's experience through an interdisciplinary approach (EJ, technology, policy, and environmental impacts). In addition, this DeCal also aims to provide them with a proper ethical understanding of urban development to gain a self-awareness before going on the spring break trip. This is with hopes of making the experience more enriching for the students, but more importantly more positive for the families we will be interacting with. There will be one additional wildcard spot on the trip team that students in the DeCal can apply for once the semester has started. 


To begin the course, we will root our curriculum by covering the various issues involved with environmental justice, focusing on specific cases in the local East Bay Area with the help of guest speakers from California Environmental Justice Alliance.  From this foundation, we will explore the various mediums of addressing these issues honing in on the option of residential solar energy systems. We will explore the nexus between environmental justice, solar energy, and later in the course climate change mitigation via various readings and videos. Leading up to the Spring Break Trip, we will bring in speakers from Bay Area non-profit GRID Alternatives and Rising Sun Energy Center, to see first hand how these important topics intersect, and gain firm basis in urban development ethics. Following the trip, we will focus on solar energy technology, policy, and both of their environmental implications on a holistic and technical scale, with a special guest lecture from ERG’s Professor Dan Kammen. Sungevity will also be giving a guest lecture on professional opportunities in the solar industry.

How to Enroll:

The 10 students that are team members of the Solar Spring Break Program(selected in September 2015) will be given priority. All other enrollment will be processed on a first come, first served basis. All students interested should attend the first class.

Course Contact: brooke.maushund AT

Faculty Sponsor: Dan Kammen

Time & Location:

Section 1Brooke Maushund
2280 BarrowsM 7p-8p1/25started

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Course info last modified January 25, 2016. This page has been viewed 2251 times.

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