What It Really Means to Require Solar Panels on All New Buildings

By [email protected] San Francisco’s groundbreaking solar rooftop mandate sounds great on paper. The city has made distributed renewable energy a basic requirement for almost all new construction — and other cities are already expressing interest in adapting the policy.

The mandate doesn’t just stimulate additional solar installations. It instigates them when they’re easiest and cheapest: while the building is under construction. This saves the future occupant all the hassle of identifying an installer, negotiating prices, drawing up designs, arranging financing and overseeing the install. Those duties fall to the developers, who are professionally suited to handling such things. Then the expense of

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