Are Solar Panels Required on All New California Homes?

The controversial 2018 law, which went into effect January 1, might have a loophole.

Back in May 2018, the Energy Commission voted to require most new single-family homes, as well as multifamily residential buildings up to three stories, be built with solar panels. But the commission also offered an alternate route to compliance—which many solar companies are labeling an “escape clause”—saying utilities, home developers, solar companies, government agencies or other entities could propose “community solar” programs that would offset the need for rooftop solar on new construction.

Critics of the loophole say that offsite-solar solutions aren’t as efficient and don’t provide the same benefits of rooftop solar, which, when paired with a battery solution to harness power, can help aid California’s residents when the city needs to implement rolling blackouts in the hot summer months.

To read up on the new law and what critics are saying about the work-around, click here.

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