Lobby group calls for national standard for US rooftop solar08. March 2013 | Applications & Installations, Global PV markets, Industry & Suppliers | By: Max Hall
The Solar Freedom Now (SFN) grassroots campaign to make household solar affordable has stepped up its campaign by demanding a national policy for all U.S. householders.
SFN wants to reduce the cost of household installations by half and is calling for a national right to install a standard sub-10 kW rooftop system, using components listed by the independent safety company UL, conforming to the U.S.' National Electric Code standards, installed by a qualified contractor and subject to only one local inspection.
The lobby group is echoing the U.S. Energy Department's war on non-hardware soft costs which, recent research suggests, are responsible for the higher cost of solar systems in the U.S. compared to Germany.
With 18,443 cities in 50 states covered by 3,273 public utility companies, SFN says a unified national process for installing household rooftop solar will drastically reduce the soft costs associated with permitting, inspections, interconnection requirements and documentation.
SFN has backed its appeal to the country's legislators with the publication of the white paper, A Roadmap to Reducing Rooftop Solar Costs by 50% and has also put together an 'Advisory Board of Solar Industry Veterans'.
The advisory board consists of: Jesse Pichel, CEO and founder of Pichel Cleantech Advisors; Paula Mints, founder and chief market research analyst at Paula Mints Solar PV Market Research; Tom McCalmont, CEO of McCalmont Engineering; and Solar Freedom Now's co-founders Ron Kenedi – president and CEO of Ron Kenedi Consulting – and Barry Cinnamon, founder of Cinnamon Solar Technology.
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