Solar Powered Homes

January 31, 2007

Construction will begin in 2007 in Boulder Colorado on a project called Solar Row. The project consists of thirteen homes using only solar power. This will be the first solar home development project in the Boulder area. The design of each home has been carefully set up to allow the home to use and creates its own energy.

Some states are pushing for solar powered housing. California officials are proposing half of all new homes build run on solar energy in within ten years. They are pushing for solar homes to prevent further issues with energy crisis. Three years ago utility customers had difficulty paying their electric bills because of the high cost. Officials plan to give rebates to home builders who agree to install solar panels on new homes. They may offer incentives for installing panels on existing homes as well. Environmental groups are backing California’s proposal as they fill it will encourage other states to follow. It is believed that if many states decide to implement such programs, then the cost of setting up solar power will greatly decrease.

However, many environmental groups aren’t willing to wait around to see what California decides to do. They have taken solar power issues to the legislation. A solar incentive bill has been approved by the Senate. It is still pending with the Assembly Committee. If approved, it would require fifteen percent of new homes being built are complete with solar panels beginning in 2010. The goal would be for the rate to increase each year by ten percent until it reaches fifty five percent.

The building industry opposes the promotion of solar homes. They are against the legislative bill. However, many in the building industry agree that solar homes could lead to economic and atmospheric improvements. The many concern of the building industry is the additional cost to them to meet the solar powered home requirements. If Congress is willing to give them monetary incentives to help reduce these costs, the issue could likely be resolved. It is estimated on average that addition solar power equipment to a home will cost $17,000 to $20,000.