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art by Favianna Rodriguez

Art by Favianna Rodriguez

“ You cannot uneducate the person who has learned to read. You cannot humiliate the person who feels pride. You cannot oppress the people who are not afraid anymore. ” – César Chávez, UFW

Latino Group Urges Mayor Julian Castro to Hold the Line Against Attacks on Rooftop Solar in Texas

As Castro’s Profile Rises Nationally with Recent Obama Nomination, Group Asks Mayor to Take a Stand in Support of Clean Energy

June 11, 2014

SAN ANTONIO, TX - As the San Antonio City Council considers a proposal today from CPS Energy to add fees on the use of solar energy, Presente.org, the largest online Latino advocacy organizing group in the nation, is pushing back. The group sent an open letter to Mayor Castro and the City Council today calling on them to take a stand for clean energy on behalf of Latino families.

See the open letter here.

“Punishing customers for their use of solar energy is a disturbing a pattern we’re seeing across the country, part of a concerted effort by utilities to block the growth of solar,” said Arturo Carmona, Executive Director of Presente.org. “With climate change and fossil fuel pollution disproportionately impacting Latino communities, we need solar now more than ever. We urge Mayor Julian Castro and city leaders to stand up for the health of our families and climate and reject attacks on solar by CPS.”

Presente.org has polled their members internally and found that the environment and climate change are second only to immigration reform in importance. The group has therefore made the impacts of our energy systems on Latino families a priority for campaigning in 2014.

Solar energy benefits everyone, even those that don't directly install it, by providing clean energy that reduces air pollution and over time, reduces the need to use dirty fossil fuel power plants, which tend to be built in lower income communities.

The charges being proposed by CPS will slow deployment of solar energy and deprive San Antonio and its neighboring towns of the benefits of cleaner air. Elements of the proposal would add unfair charges and fees on solar customers. These charges favor wealthy homeowners and will make it more difficult for middle and lower income families to afford the use of solar energy.


With over 300,000 members, Presente.org is the nation’s largest online Latino organizing group. In an internal poll of its members, climate change and environmental concerns were second only to immigration in importance.