Imagine getting a credit from SoCal Edison instead of a bill. Net-zero homeowners rely on power from utilities at night but get credit for the energy they produce during the day that they don’t consume. If you live in a smart home with solar power and get involved with California’s net meter programs, your energy credits for the power you create and do not use. Shine sun shine.
Net metering allows homeowners to get credit for the power they produce at a retail rate rather than a wholesale rate…nice incentive, yes? There is currently a cap on net metering programs, but experts say the cap won’t be hit any time soon.
“The energy that I don’t use Edison buys from me,” notes green home owner Steve Rosen. “It looks like I may not have an electric bill next year, because the electricity, all of it is going to keep on adding to that credit. I still have to pay delivery and handling charges, but that is just a couple of bucks a month.”
Environmentalists began pushing for California to mandate that new homes come with renewable energy systems in the early 2000s, as the technology became more scalable and available. Now there’s no other way.
In 2008, California energy regulators adopted a long-term plan that called for having all new residential buildings achieve zero net energy use by 2020 and having all commercial buildings achieve zero net energy use by 2030. And…it looks like we just might get there.
Sunny day? Let it shine…and let it make you money.
by Jodi Summers
To our health. You gotta love that California has been pushing policies for green development all millennium. Now that we’re climbing out of the recession, expect new homes to be those space-age models of energy efficiency that we have previously only imagined. As the economy gains momentum, so is the green building revolution.
New green homes by major developers are light years ahead of where they were before the recession. Motivated by government initiatives like New Solar Homes Partnership.
KB Home has made solar systems standard on new houses in Southern California. Lennar, Pardee Homes and Pulte Homes offer solar home projects. ABC Green Home of Newport Beach is will be building a net-zero home to showcase green technology for consumers. Clarum Homes in Palo Alto is a custom builder that has gained praise for incorporating energy efficiency and passive solar features into homes with modernist flourishes.
The New Solar Homes Partnership adopts a long-term plan that called for having all new residential buildings achieve zero net energy use by 2020 and having all commercial buildings achieve zero net energy use by 2030.
Beyond solar, green new home efficiency benefits include tankless hot water heaters, adjustable thermostats, LED lighting and Energy Star appliances, as well as other economical perks. Live efficiently and your electricity bill from Southern California Edison Co. can be close to zero.
Designs like the ZeroHouse model by Los Angeles builder KB Home exemplify the housing industry’s attempt to move beyond the one-off LEED vanity project and make subdivision building a green practice. New net-zero homes are so green they produce at least as much juice as they consume.
Environmentalists began pushing for California to mandate that new homes come with renewable energy systems in the early 2000s, as the technology became more scalable and available. Our CalGreen construction codes have influenced the world…now perhaps our homes will as well.
by Jodi Summers
Environmentalists began pushing for our Golden State to mandate that new homes come with renewable energy systems in the early part of this millennium.
The effort to get builders to build green grew into state law SB-1. SB-1 created the Million Solar Roofs Initiative, calling for the creation of 3,000 megawatts of new, solar-generated electricity by 2016. Always one for a good challenge, Gov. Jerry Brown upped the ante, and quadrupled the solar energy goal to 12,000 megawatts, or roughly the equivalent of 12 nuclear power plants. As an FYI, A thousand megawatts of solar energy could power about 250,000 homes. 12,000 megawatts = 3,000,000 homes.
All that power gets rolled into the California Solar Initiative, which uses rebates to promote renewable energy use in previously owned homes, as well as commercial, agricultural, government and nonprofit buildings. You can read all 193 pages here:
Okay, now that you’re up to speed, are you able to power your property at a profit?
by Jodi Summers
Rumor floating around Sacramento has it that California regulators are ready to approve energy standards that would require new homes and commercial buildings to have “solar-ready roofs,” among other energy-efficient standards.
The new regulations would not require commercial or residential property owners to install solar systems, but the roofs of new properties would be built to easily accommodate solar installation.
The new standards being kicked around also include common-sense measures such as insulating hot-water pipes and ensuring air conditioning systems are inspected for air flow. More to come….
The dark-blue/black look of solar PV are cool, but now there are choices – red, emerald green, forest green, and polished marble panels.
The Stylish Solar Panels are produced and assembled in the USA and come with a 5-year workmanship and 25-year power warranty. Colored Solar CEO Michael Mrozek said: “Our customers can be comfortable knowing that our panels have been tested to ETL’s respected standards and will meet and qualify for all rebates and tax incentives … our game changing colored solar panels are built to a higher standard.”
The solar panels have ETL safety certification to UL1703 and a listing by the California Energy Commission. In terms of panel efficiency, NREL found there is little performance compromised for a 16%+ efficiency colored 225W panel.
by Jodi Summers
Ever hear of the California Solar Rights Act and Solar Shade Control Act? Yeah, neither have we. These acts give California, “A near absolute right to install solar energy systems as long as there will not be an adverse impact upon public health or safety,” observes Anthony Marinaccio an associate at Alvarez-Glasman & Colvin, who specializes in the fields of land use, solar rights, government relations, environmental law.
“These two Acts are powerful tools for developers and commercial property owners to use when planning to install or incorporate solar panels on their properties—either as part of an existing project, a new project, or a ‘solar farm,” advises Matthew Gorman, a partner at Alvarez-Glasman & Colvin, who specializes in the fields of land use, solar rights, government relations, environmental law.
The Solar Rights Act “empowers developers to incorporate solar energy systems into the projects by barring cities, counties, and other local governments from establishing obstructions to the installation of solar energy systems and by streamlining the issuance of permits for such systems,” points out Marinaccio.
To be empowered, developers must ensure that the solar system meets all local and commercial health and safety standards. The Solar Rating Certification Corp. or other comparable national organization will certify all solar energy systems for heating water. The National Electric Code and Public Utilities are responsible for the standards of safety and reliability, which must be met for solar energy systems that produce electricity.
Once these three criteria are satisfied, a developer nearly has a right to install such solar panels in conjunction with local rules.
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