Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting

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The U.S. solar industry has reached a point in which the cost of solar is favorably comparable to the costs of retail electricity in many states. *The price for photovoltaic (PV) modules have experienced rapid declines due to fierce international competition and subsequent over supply. Still, non-hardware costs such as permitting and inspection have remained [...]The post Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting appeared first on Solar Feeds.

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  • solarix
    solarix Solar Expert Posts: 713 ✭✭
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    Re: Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting

    I, and all the installers I meet, view this as our biggest problem in the business, and the source of 90% of our daily frustration in life. In thinking about how to improve the situation, it occurs to me that from a systems view, there is no feedback loop on these building departments. They just do whatever they think is best with no real repercussions coming back on them. They drive up the costs of construction in the interest of unlimited safety and liability considerations to the point there is no such thing as affordable housing. Maybe what they need is some kind of metric based on the local economy, which (in times like now) relaxes the permitting requirements somehow. As it is, there is no impediment to the requirements going up, up, and away, and no mechanism for reduction or common sense.

    The latest insanity we have is they require mounts to attach to the roof framing, but no longer allow putting screws into the truss members. Anybody know how to accomplish that?
  • Cariboocoot
    Cariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭✭
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    Re: Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting
    solarix wrote: »
    I, and all the installers I meet, view this as our biggest problem in the business, and the source of 90% of our daily frustration in life. In thinking about how to improve the situation, it occurs to me that from a systems view, there is no feedback loop on these building departments. They just do whatever they think is best with no real repercussions coming back on them. They drive up the costs of construction in the interest of unlimited safety and liability considerations to the point there is no such thing as affordable housing. Maybe what they need is some kind of metric based on the local economy, which (in times like now) relaxes the permitting requirements somehow. As it is, there is no impediment to the requirements going up, up, and away, and no mechanism for reduction or common sense.

    The latest insanity we have is they require mounts to attach to the roof framing, but no longer allow putting screws into the truss members. Anybody know how to accomplish that?

    Use nails. :p
    Stupid regulations are made to discourage solar because of ignorance, fear, and profit motives. Engineering requirements seem to have very little to do with any of it.

    You have my sympathies as I'm now in a 2 year battle over much the same kind of stupidity.
    Stopping now before I start raving like a psychopath. :grr
  • NorthGuy
    NorthGuy Solar Expert Posts: 1,913 ✭✭
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    Re: Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting

    I don't think they have bad intentions against solar.

    This is a cultural thing. In North America, safety is valued unproportionally high. So, the government enforces these believes. It is only going to get worse over time.
  • Cariboocoot
    Cariboocoot Banned Posts: 17,615 ✭✭✭
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    Re: Top 10 Ways to Improve Solar Permitting
    NorthGuy wrote: »
    I don't think they have bad intentions against solar.

    This is a cultural thing. In North America, safety is valued unproportionally high. So, the government enforces these believes. It is only going to get worse over time.

    Save us all from those who would save us all. :roll: