California predicts mandatory solar panel installations will add nearly $10,000 to the upfront cost of a home — money that will be recouped through energy savings.
Solar panels will be a required feature on new houses in California, after the state’s Building Standards Commission gave final approval to a housing rule that’s the first of its kind in the United States.
Set to take effect in 2020, the new standard includes an exemption for houses that are often shaded from the sun. It also includes incentives for people to add a high-capacity battery to their home’s electrical system, to store the sun’s energy.
“These provisions really are historic and will be a beacon of light for the rest of the country,” said commissioner Kent Sasaki, according to The Mercury News. “[It’s] the beginning of substantial improvement in how we produce energy and reduce the consumption of fossil fuels.”