California has approved the mandate for solar on all new homes beginning in 2020.
The California Building Standards Commission (CBSC) officially confirmed the new solar standard requirements on new homes in California starting in 2020. In May, the final regulatory vote was confirmed by the California Energy Commission (CEC), making California the first state in the country with the clean energy requirement. The new rules include a solar plus storage option to give consumers more clean energy choices.
Highly energy efficient and solar-powered homes will save families money on their high energy bills from as soon as they walk through their front door. Homebuyers will also have a solar plus storage option, allowing their homemade clean energy to work for them day and night.
The standards require California homes and businesses to follow strong energy efficiency measures, lowering their energy use. For the first time, it is required that solar photovoltaic (PV) panels be installed on new low-rise residential buildings beginning January 1, 2020. Including, single family homes and multi-family buildings of three stories or less; therefore apartments and condos are included in the new standards. The vote also provides the homeowner with a solar plus storage option if desired and solar water heating provisions for larger buildings, allowing solar energy continue to help reduce the water heating needs of our buildings.
The California Energy Commission (CEC), completed detailed analysis on the new requirements, and gathered official public input from all collaborators
— utility companies, home builders, solar industry, lighting industry. The analysis revealed the new solar requirement will be cost-effective in all climate zones in the state – from the mountains to the Central Valley to the coast. Due to these new standards, homeowners would save $40 dollars each month, or roughly $500 per year. This is because even though the new energy efficiency and solar requirement would add roughly $40 per month to the mortgage payment, but will save the homeowners $80 a month in heating, cooling and lighting bills.
Right now the solar industry installs solar on roughly 150,000 new and existing homes in California yearly, with approximately 15,000 of those projects being new homes. California on average builds 80,000 new homes annually. Starting in 2020, those new homes will have solar; a four time increase in comparison to today.