In a revolutionary move, California may make it mandatory for newly-built homes to have solar panels ready to be used. It is an extension of the Energy Efficiency mandate that had its origin in 2007. The state would be probably announcing the mandate next week. According to the mandate, any to-be-built home permitted after 2020 will be required to have solar panels. The voting scheduled on Wednesday will decide the fate of this new energy-efficiency-oriented movement of the state. This mandate is expected to increase the use of solar energy among homes and other residential spaces. This is, however, not exactly based on the net zero concept, where solar power can almost replace the use of electric power.
This move by California is obviously welcomed by the environmentalists outside the world, since the world is collectively trying to save the depleting energy resources by relying on solar power. With this mandate in effect by 2020, the upcoming homes will be consuming major amount of power from solar sources instead of the traditional power grids and gas-based energy. There are, however, concerns regarding the final impact of the mandate on the building cost of homes. It is expected that there would be an increase of $25000 to $30000 when the solar panels are being implemented. But, the same implementation is expected to save an amount of $50000 to $60000 in the long run.
In addition, the mandate has faced criticism from some people, especially the builder’s associations, who do believe that the costs of home building are already higher and that the mandate would make it impossible for many people to afford a home. That having said, California seems to be confident in implementing this mandate, which also keeps some provisions for the promotion of electric equipment over gas-based ones as well as the use of electric batteries like Tesla PowerWall.