California officially becomes first in nation mandating solar power for new homes

California officially became the first state in the nation on Wednesday, Dec. 5 to require homes built in 2020 and later be solar powered.

. . . While nobody spoke Wednesday in opposition to the new provisions, the commission received more than 300 letters from around the state opposing the solar mandate because of the added cost.

Energy officials estimated the provisions will add $10,000 to the cost of building a single-family home, about $8,400 from adding solar and about $1,500 for making homes more energy-efficient.

. . . In addition to the solar mandate, the new provisions tighten green homebuilding standards, with such requirements as thicker attic and wall insulation, more efficient windows and doors and improved ventilation systems. They also encourage developers to add battery storage and heat-pump water heaters to new homes.

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