At this point, whenever one thinks of solar power systems, the images that most often come to mind are large-scale projects that utilize much land to accommodate fields of photovoltaic panels. Yet, as the drive toward green energy continues, this image may shift in the years to come.
One thing that many have been calling for, and that we stand in support of, is the expansion of rooftop solar for residences and businesses. While there remain many hurdles to make such small-scale solar systems widely available and affordable, there are some indications that efforts are under way to increase access.
As much as it is in our nature to be skeptical about such public displays of altruism, this one looks to be reproach-free. We especially like the fact that local labor will be used to carry out this initiative and that some estimates suggest electricity bills could drop by as much as 50 to 80 percent.
The partnership that exists between Citizens Energy Corp. and SDG&E appears to be the right sort of vehicle to allow for more diversified solar infrastructure. As individuals around the area and nation lament the impact that large-scale solar projects often have on public and private lands, a push toward a more decentralized system should ease some concern.
Having our local utility throw in a helping hand with the rooftop initiative also deserves mention. Aside from installing a bi-directional meter for the Valley’s first home to benefit from the program, the utility also installed weatherization material to make the home more energy efficient.
As concerns about climate change persist and legislation compels the additional development of renewable energy projects to meet mandated goals, we hope to see similar initiatives take root on individual rooftops.
THE ISSUE: Rooftop solar systems
WE SAY: Partnership to benefit Valley in multiple ways.
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