Honnold Foundation: Equitable Solar Energy for Marginalized People – My Modern Met

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From scaling the seemingly insurmountable El Capitan overlooking the lush forest of Yosemite to climbing the 3,750-foot Ingmikortilaq in Greenland, rock climber Alex Honnold is no stranger to embracing and conquering elevated peaks in nature. Known for his free-solo style climbing—documented in the Oscar-winning documentary Free Solo—Honnold works to overcome physical and mental adversities that inevitably occur during climbs. As someone who has experienced some of the most magnificent natural marvels of the world firsthand, Honnold is also a nature lover who plays his part in environmental conservation. The California native has established a philanthropic organization, Honnold Foundation, that encourages the use of solar power.

For Honnold, spreading the benefits of solar power is about more than just clean energy. It is an environmentally conscious alternative to fossil fuels, but it is also something that has the ability to enhance a sense of community and embolden marginalized communities to take back power (literally and figuratively). The charitable institution provides fair access to reliable solar energy resources to places such as Puerto Rico, areas of the Amazon, Kenya, and the United States. The application of clean energy also creates opportunities for members of each respective community to be involved in the installation and maintenance of the energy resources. The Honnold Foundation trains locals on the use and maintenance of the solar energy equipment. This establishes a way for the community to continue to flourish, even after the energy resource is established.

One particular Honnold Foundation project based in Puerto Rico heavily involves a local group called Casa Pueblo, who worked together to construct a microgrid. Having this local group involved in such an instrumental way presents a collaborative experience and its impact on the community. Another noteworthy philanthropic venture of the Honnold Foundation is located in Memphis, Tennessee. The goal of this particular project is to provide alternative energy resources to lower the amount that people in the area spend on energy bills.

“Many communities [the Honnold Foundation] partners with report infringements on their sovereignty through infrastructural, economic, social, and environmental injustices,” the organizations states. “That’s why our Core Fund partnerships are unrestricted, ‘no-strings-attached’—giving the space for our Partners to use the funding as a resource to build forms of sovereignty, and development by and for them. Where historically energy systems were a means of disenfranchisement, here, energy becomes a tool of empowerment. So while solar often starts with facilitating energy access, when placed in the hands of innovative community experts, it’s so much more! Equitable solar energy access is a leverage point for communities to cultivate local power and self-governance.”

At the heart of what Honnold is working towards lies a desire to provide alternative solutions to energy access while sparking a sense of personal power, joy, and togetherness amongst people he encounters. The Honnold Foundation continuously reaches new heights and inspires people to prioritize ways to help one another gain access to reliable resources.

Free solo climber Alex Honnold is probably best known for his incredible, athletic feats…

…which have even been highlighted in an Oscar-winning documentary aptly titled Free Solo.

But now he is reaching new heights with his charity called Honnold Foundation.

The Honnold Foundation prioritizes the involvement of locals to implement reliable solar energy.

Each project typically involves two major pieces of equipment—a solar microgrid and an off-grid solar rooftop.

Both of these solar grids capture and store energy from the Sun and turn that into electricity.

Honnold Foundation continues to enhance human connection around the world through solar energy.

Honnold Foundation: Website | Facebook | Instagram
Alex Honnold: Instagram
h/t: [Canary Media]

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