After nearly three years, the White House began installing solar panels on the First Family's residence this week, a White House official confirmed Thursday.

(Haraz N. Ghanbari - AP) (Haraz N. Ghanbari - AP)

The Obama administration had pledged in October 2010 to put solar panels on the White House as a sign of the president's commitment to renewable energy.

The White House official, who asked not to be identified because the installation is in process, wrote in an e-mail the project is "a part of an energy retrofit that will improve the overall energy efficiency of the building."