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Town to require PV panels on new construction

Post in 'The Green Room' started by semipro, Mar 7, 2013.

  1. semipro

    semipro Minister of Fire

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  2. bmblank

    bmblank Minister of Fire

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    Another reason I'm glad i don't live in California. Beautiful state, but for all i care it can break off and float away with everybody on it. Except my parents, who are visiting some friends...
  3. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    Oh no. What will be next Requiring indoor plumbing? Wiring? Sewer and water? Where does it end...
    scooby074, milleo and charly like this.
  4. bmblank

    bmblank Minister of Fire

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    I have nothing against the pv panels. What i don't like is all the government mandates and requirements. Basically they're asking people to tack an extra 10-15 grand onto the price of their house.
    If somebody decides to put panels up on their own, more power to them, but who the hell are they to tell me what i can and cannot do with my own property?
  5. woodgeek

    woodgeek Minister of Fire

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    The bigger issue is if the 'average person' just buys a house with pre-existing PV (as opposed to going through the whole educational process of deciding to buy them and have them installed), will they be less concerned with saving juice than if they had bought a house without. :confused:

    IOW, will they end up wasting more energy than the PVs generate b/c of the 'green light' that their house is green?
    PapaDave likes this.
  6. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    A house here in the neighborhood had a really nice solar setup installed many years ago. Since they sold the house the people that live there now have never used any of it.
  7. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    All the more reason not to move to Lancaster, CA... If I put solar on my house it will be of *my* choosing...
    milleo likes this.
  8. sloeffle

    sloeffle Member

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    I think a better idea is to require new houses in Lancaster be Passive house compliant or have a Platinum or Gold LEED status. It makes you wonder how many politicians in Lancaster are / were getting their palms greased by the solar industry.
    milleo likes this.
  9. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    Good idea. I like the idea of more alternative energy but I can just see some builders throwing panels on a house with no southern exposure just to meet the requirement.
  10. sloeffle

    sloeffle Member

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    I cannot agree with you more. I do not get why we always want to re-invent the wheel. IMHO it makes more sense to make the wheel more efficient and use less energy then spend a bunch of money on something that the average home owner could care less about.

    I am all for alternative energy but the average person wants to check a box on their electric bill that gives them x % of their energy from alternative sources.
    daveswoodhauler likes this.
  11. charly

    charly Guest

    Myself,,, I think that by the time you break even on most of the solar stuff,, it will be obsolete as far as newer designs. You'll never get ahead. Also a family business by me that has been doing standing seam metal roofs for years went to get their solar install license.. They said what a joke with all the paper work... They did two installs as required as to get their license. They said as soon as they showed that they were not going to go through one of the three major solar outfits and be independent,, they were denied a license...and these guys do beautiful work, usually booked a year in advance,,, so they said screw it! They also said some of the panels that mounted to the roofs with adhesives would ruin the roof if it had to be removed,,, so these panel people instead of paying for a roof rewired around the bad panel..that way the company didn't have to pay for a new roof and the customer never knew any different. The guys wife of the roofing company said they made 10 times the hot water using their wood stove plumbed for heating water then their hot water panels ever did.. Guess you realy need to do your homework and know what your getting into.. I'm too old to see a pay back :p
  12. Circus

    Circus Member

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    A case of over enthusiasm. Mandating a technology looks and is just asking for corruption. Anticipating future solar "solar ready" is free and would make a later installation much cheaper.
  13. peakbagger

    peakbagger Minister of Fire

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    The logical endpoint of the policy is going to be panels facing north. I do like the concept of setting a reasonable energy limit per square foot and let the economics decide what works the best, conservation or generation.

    Unfortunately as many folks find out, there are significant energy savings that can be gained just by chasing around with a can of great stuff or caulking at the end of the day after the contractor has headed out.
  14. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    I read something today on this very subject that really p*ssed me off as a taxpayer in my town... I read that my town is looking into installing a 600KW solar array next to the brand new town garage (as a matter of disclosure, *I* built it, to replace a truly worn out 36 year old cobbled together mess).

    This array will be several million dollars... and covered in snow 6 months out of the year....
  15. EatenByLimestone

    EatenByLimestone Minister of Fire

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    I can see the value of having municipal buildings with solar on the roof. I think it will be a nightmare for every house to have it up there. I think it would be better to have a certification such as a LEEDS cert for houses guaranteeing energy efficiency. This could be attached to the house and help resale value. I would be interested in a house with super low utility bills.


    Matt
  16. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    LEEDS doesn't guarantee a darned thing.... other than a bigger paycheck for the architect...
    daveswoodhauler likes this.
  17. sesmith

    sesmith Member

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    Instead of a mandate that solar be installed, why not mandate a target energy usage per year for the house instead. Leave it up to the designer / builder whether the target is reached through building size, insulation, use of heat pumps, solar, etc. At the end of the year, compliance can be encouraged through a carrot and stick rebate on property taxes. If you're under your target, you get a rebate on your property taxes. If you're over, you get a charge added to your property taxes. Any extra collected in the extra charges in the community over the rebates given out, should be earmarked for community wide energy related improvements. Some version of a program like this could be used to encourage energy upgrades in older construction as well.
  18. bmblank

    bmblank Minister of Fire

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    Why mandate anything? If people want to spend $500/mo. On energy that's their own prerogative. The carrot should be a less money out of pocket paying for energy.
  19. woodgeek

    woodgeek Minister of Fire

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    Agreed. Progressive pricing and frowny faces on their bills...;sick
    milleo likes this.
  20. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    I *was* paying about $600/mo for K1 to fire 2 monitor type heaters... it was a crushing expense. I finally was able to come up with enough money to put in a new class A (existing masonry was unservicable)... My best friend gave me the smoke dragon out of his garage... I went from $600/Mo to about $20.. for gas for the splitter and saw...
  21. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    this wasn't on the roof.. this 600kw array will cover damn near an acre... between the new building and the road...
  22. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Face the house to the correct exposure, and use insulation properly...no need to spend the additional $25K on solar.
    They should make mandates on efficiency and insulation vs making PV required. For the record, I am all for solar....just don't think the gooberment should mandate
    Dune likes this.
  23. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    I don't think the local government should be mandating such things either... especially since there are pre-1640 structures still standing in town.

    Speaking of town mandates.... a development my family is selling off (I was against, but got out voted)... each new house is required to have a sprinkler system... on a well and the first thing the FD does is have the electricity cut off....
  24. scooby074

    scooby074 Feeling the Heat

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    I dont think that requirements to meet a specific LEED target is a bad idea.

    I think a better way to do it is with credits. Got solar? Save $1000/yr off taxes. X% recycled materials? Save $150/yr. And so on.
  25. Bret Chase

    Bret Chase Minister of Fire

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    LEEDS is a misguided joke... that only benefits the "design professional"

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