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Ex-President Jimmy Carter powered half his home town with solar energy—and 9 other awesome things he’s done

02/18/2020 10:14 am ET Dara Brewton

Source / Jimmy Carter Presidential Library

Former President Jimmy Carter has been supporting green energy since 1979 when he had solar panels installed on the White House. Now, the 94-year-old is responsible for providing 50% of the energy in Plains, Georgia.

Carter had 3,852 solar panels installed on his farm and 324 panels installed on his library. He produces 1.3 MW of solar energy that is helping power his hometown.

Getting a solar farm up and running in Plains isn’t the only awesome thing this former president has accomplished since leaving the White House. Here are 9 more reasons why Jimmy Carter is the best.

1. Advocating for clean energy

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 5

Source / Wikipedia

This former president is considered one of the top advocates for clean energy in the world.

While in the Oval Office, he set up the Department of Energy and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. He also signed the Public Utility Regulatory Act.

He discussed his decision to put solar panels on the White House saying:

“A generation from now, this solar heater can either be a curiosity, a museum piece, an example of a road not taken, or it can be just a small part of one of the greatest and most exciting adventures ever undertaken by the American people.”

2. Building homes for those in need

Jimmy is back! Republicans have tried many times to count President Carter out, and they have never been right. 1

Screenshot / YouTube

The Carters have been busy building homes around the world for the past 35 years. Tirelessly advocating for Habitat for Humanity, the pair have worked with thousands of volunteers and even rallied a few celebrities to the cause.

The former first couple is not just the face of the organization. They have been hands-on in the construction of more than 4,300 homes (and counting!) in 14 different countries.

3. Having an amazing work ethic

Screenshot / YouTube

Former President Carter hasn’t let anything hold him back from his work with Habitat for Humanity.

After a fall requiring 14 stitches in October of last year, Carter was at the job site Monday morning as scheduled.

Not even a broken hip could keep him down for long. Just a few months after the fracture, he was working on homes in Nashville, TN.

4. Backing education

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 4

Source / Wikimedia

While in the Oval Office, President Carter established the Department of Education. He also increased the number of college tuition grants available for underprivileged students.

Carter said:

“Primary responsibility for education should rest with those States, localities, and private institutions that have made our Nation’s educational system the best in the world, but the Federal Government has for too long failed to play its own supporting role in education as effectively as it could. Instead of assisting school officials at the local level, it has too often added to their burden. Instead of setting a strong administrative model, the Federal structure has contributed to bureaucratic buck passing. Instead of simulating needed debate of educational issues, the Federal Government has confused its role of junior partner in American education with that of silent partner.”

5. Bringing peace

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 1

Source / Wikimedia

Carter’s presidency is often underrated even though his foreign policy agenda was responsible for bringing peace in the Middle East.

He was also responsible for giving control of the Panama Canal back to the local government, and he limited the sale of arms to military dictatorships.

In 1978, he produced the Camp David Accords and mediated the negotiations between Isreal and Egypt.

6. Setting a shining example

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 3

Source / Wikimedia

In 2019, the Carters celebrated their 73rd wedding anniversary setting a shining example of what a First Couple can be.

Although Rosalynn initially turned down Jimmy’s proposal in order to keep a promise to graduate college that she made to her dying father, the pair were wed in 1946. They have been going strong ever since.

7. Founding the Carter Center

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 6

Source / Wikipedia

In a partnership with Emory University, the former First Couple founded the Carter Center in 1982 with a mission to advance health and peace across the globe.

According to the center, life has been improved in over 80 countries. Conflicts have been resolved and democracy has been restored.

Some notable achievements include the near eradication of Guinea worm disease. In the late 80s, there were 3.5 million people affected but only about 53 cases in 2019.

The center has also overseen elections around the world in order to ensure fairness. Carter has overseen at least 39 himself.

8. Being a good steward of the land

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 2

Source / National Park Service

In 2016, the National Park Service bestowed their highest honor on Carter and made him an honorary national park ranger.

“President Carter embodies the spirit and principals of the National Park Service and it is a great honor for me to present him with this award. As we look forward to our agency’s next 100 years, we can look back and be inspired by the incredible work of President Carter.”

During his presidency, Carter added 39 National Park Service units including the Martin Luther King Junior National Historic Site and the Women’s Rights NationalHistoric Park. He also permanently protected 56 million acres of land in Alaska.

9. Getting all the prizes

Jimmy Carter's solar farm and 7 other awesome things this former president has done 8

Source / Wikimedia

Carter’s contributions to the world have not gone unnoticed.

In 1998, he was awarded a United Nations’ Human Rights Prize which is only given out every five years.

The following year, he and his wife Rosalynn were given the Presidential Medal of Freedom by former President Bill Clinton. This is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a civilian by the U.S. government. While presenting the award, Clinton said, “Jimmy and Rosalynn Carter have done more good things for more people in more places than any other couple on the face of the Earth.”

Carter was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2002 for “his decades of untiring effort to find peaceful solutions to international conflicts, to advance democracy and human rights, and to promote economic and social development.”

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