Add solar panels to your home
California recently became the first state in the U.S. to introduce a policy requiring rooftop solar to be installed on all new homes. The mandate will go into effect in 2020.
The solar mandate is intended to lighten the environmental footprint of new homes (it also comes with a variety of building efficiency mandates, like thicker insulation and better sealing around windows and doors). Proponents say that mandating rooftop solar will cause the cost of installations to drop further and also encourage more innovation in solar and home energy storage. In preparation for an influx of solar from rooftop installations, grid utilities might also be forced to make much-needed upgrades to energy distribution infrastructure.
And there’s another benefit to the rooftop solar mandate proponents cite that’s very likely: it’s societal normalization. If homeowners in older buildings see solar installations go up on new homes, they may be more compelled to upgrade their own energy systems to renewable. And the increased visibility of home solar might also make people more amenable to supporting larger-scale policy shifts in favour of renewable energy.
With California leading the way in the U.S., you can expect solar to be increasingly available and affordable. It’s a great time to look into adding some solar panels to your own home.