The city of Lancaster in Los Angeles county has required that solar arrays be installed on all new-build houses since 2014. It has now passed an additional ‘net zero energy’ policy mandating that these rooftop arrays contain 2 W per square foot.
Since this will not be possible for all roofs, the policy offers additional options: paying a fee of $1.40 per square foot in lieu of a solar system, or a combination of a smaller solar system and a fee.
Mayor Rex Parris said in a statement that ‘the Zero Net Energy Home Ordinance expands upon Lancaster’s residential solar ordinance so that new homes built in Lancaster now will not only be environmentally friendly, but have a zero net impact on our environment, while reducing energy costs for the homeowners.’
A feasibility study must be completed before the ordinance can take effect, after which the California Energy Commission (CEC) must approve it. The study is expected to be completed by April and CEC approval can take up to six months.