The best of EcoWatch, right in your inbox. Sign up for our email newsletter!
Free Solar Arrays Coming to Communities in State With No Incentives
Free renewable energy and reduced emissions are on the way to new homes in two Texas communities.
SolarCity and PSW, a Texas real estate firm, have announced they will jointly provide solar panels for two neighborhoods in the Dallas-Fort Worth, TX region. Each new home in the 1600 Kings Highway and Bishop Heights communities will come equipped with a 3 kilowatt (kW) solar array. The companies said it's the first time a builder in the area has offered such a program.
The arrays are expected to cut carbon dioxide emissions by more 50 percent over the life of the system.
“At PSW, environmentally conscious elements are not add-ons to our designs, but intrinsic characteristics,” said Adam Stetson, PSW’s president for the Dallas-Fort Worth area. “With such an abundance of sunshine here in Texas, and homeowners who increasingly care about sustainability as well as household savings, standardizing solar only makes sense.”
The builder will prepay for each home's solar electricity, with no further monthly costs for the buyer. SolarCity has agreed to foot the costs for maintenance, repairs, insurance and installation.
There will be nearly 80 homes between the two communities that are within walking distance from downtown. The homes will be ready for move-in by summer 2014.
While smaller commercial solar installations have been driving the market in the past year, small residential jobs are on the rise, too. Of states with 15 or more installations that were 10 kW or less in 2012, Texas had the cheapest median rate at $3.90 per watt, according to the Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory.
The Texas government has yet to pass any tax incentives for solar, or rebate policies to encourage individuals or families to generate power and sell it back to the grid, according to ThinkProgress.org.
SolarCity wants to double the number of American homes with solar arrays by 2016. The company works with 75 builders in nine states.
Visit EcoWatch’s RENEWABLES page for more related news on this topic.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Julia Conley
A council representing more than 800,000 doctors across the U.S. signed a letter Friday imploring President Donald Trump to reverse his call for businesses to reopen by April 12, warning that the president's flouting of the guidance of public health experts could jeopardize the health of millions of Americans and throw hospitals into even more chaos as they fight the coronavirus pandemic.
By Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner
Over six gallons of water are required to produce one gallon of wine. "Irrigation, sprays, and frost protection all [used in winemaking] require a lot of water," explained winemaker and sommelier Keith Wallace, who's also a professor and the founder of the Wine School of Philadelphia, the largest independent wine school in the U.S. And water waste is just the start of the climate-ruining inefficiencies commonplace in the wine industry. Sustainably speaking, climate change could be problematic for your favorite glass of wine.
By Jeff Turrentine
From day to day, our public health infrastructure — the people and systems we've put in place to keep populations, as opposed to individuals, healthy — largely goes unnoticed. That's because when it's working well, its success takes the form of utter normalcy.
Cell Phone Tracking Analysis Shows Where Florida Springbreakers and New Yorkers Fleeing Coronavirus Went to Next
By Eoin Higgins
A viral video showing cell phone data collected by location accuracy company X-Mode from spring break partiers potentially spreading the coronavirus around the U.S. has brought up questions of digital privacy even as it shows convincingly the importance of staying home to defeat the disease.