How Solar Panels Can Boost Your Home's Value by Nearly $6,000
Plenty of additions can add to a home's market value, and a roof with solar panels is no exception.
The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory's (LBNL) Electricity Markets and Policy Group released a report with the numbers to prove it, too. According to LBNL, home values can increase by $5,911 for each kilowatt (kW) of solar energy generated by a rooftop system.
Most California homes can produce 2 to 5 KW, so, clearly, bigger is better when it comes to home premiums and energy production. The study also indicates that buyers are gravitating to solar homes with newer systems.
"The take-away here is the market is showing that [photovoltaic] PV is valued by home buyers," LBNL staff research associate Ben Hoen told the San Francisco Chronicle. "There could be a green cachet for the PV system that would be over and above the expected price."
The study looked at 1,894 California homes with solar roofs, compared with more than 70,000 non-solar homes sold in the state from 2000 to 2009.
The report found that the added value slides with each passing year. Premiums decrease by about 9 percent per year, while electricity generation drops by about 1 percent per year.
"They might be perceived as older technology, even if they're still producing electricity at the expected rate," Hoen said. "An individual home is going to have its own, individual premium for PV."
Still, adding a solar panel pays for itself in the way of energy savings and can be a nice complement to renovations and other factors to add to a home's value. That will become even more evident as more real estate appraisers figure out the best ways to assign value to solar systems.
"Valuing homes with green technologies of various kinds is becoming more common," he said. "It's not a process that happens overnight, but it is happening."
LBNL plans on updating the study soon and looking at other states, too. Prices have dropped dramatically since the final year of the data used for the study. In California alone, prices dropped from $10.60 per watt in 2009 to $5.67 per watt this year, according to the state's Go Solar website.
Nationwide, the average cost is $4.99 per watt and expected to decrease each year.
Visit EcoWatch’s RENEWABLES page for more related news on this topic.
The Poison Papers: Secret Concerns of Industry and Regulators on the Hazards of Pesticides and Other Chemicals
The Bioscience Resource Project and the Center for Media and Democracy released a trove of rediscovered and newly digitized chemical industry and regulatory agency documents Wednesday stretching back to the 1920s. The documents are available here.
Together, the papers show that both industry and regulators understood the extraordinary toxicity of many chemical products and worked together to conceal this information from the public and the press. These papers will transform our understanding of the hazards posed by certain chemicals on the market and the fraudulence of some of the regulatory processes relied upon to protect human health and the environment.
I'm a huge Trevor Hall fan so when I saw he was playing in my hometown of Cleveland, I was stoked. I knew seeing the show would be fantastic, but I was also thinking an interview with Trevor would be something really cool to give EcoWatch readers. So, lucky enough, I was offered an interview and was able to hop on my paddleboard from Whiskey Island on the shore of Lake Erie, head up the Cuyahoga River and get to the Music Box Supper Club just in time to chat with Trevor before the show.
"My dad was a drummer, so most my musical influence comes from my dad," Trevor said during our nearly hour interview. "Growing up, my dad had this CD collection in the hallway and I was always fascinated by all the CDs. My hobby was pulling out a CD that looked cool and I'd put it on the stereo and pretend I was rocking out. My dad was really into The Doobie Brothers, Allman Brothers, Earth Wind & Fire, Simply Red, and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young."
American Electric Power (AEP) will invest $4.5 billion in a wind energy project in Oklahoma that could become the largest wind farm in the U.S., the utility announced Wednesday.
AEP will develop a 350-mile transmission line for the 2 GW farm.
The sun is rising on a newer, cleaner era of American energy use.
The U.S. generates nearly eight times as much electricity from the sun and the wind than it did in 2007—enough to power more than 25 million homes—and the average American uses 10 percent less energy than he or she did 10 years ago, according to a new report by Environment America Research and Policy Center.
The report, Renewables on the Rise: A Decade of Progress Toward a Clean Energy Future, also cites a 20-fold increase in battery storage of electricity and the meteoric rise in sales of electric cars—from virtually none in 2007 to nearly 160,000 last year—as evidence that despite attempted rollbacks in Washington, a clean energy revolution is under way across the U.S.
By Tim Radford
Geoengineering, the deliberate alteration of the planet to undo its inadvertent alteration by humans over the past 200 years, is back on the scientific agenda, with a climate compromise suggested as a possible solution.
One group wants to turn down the global thermostat and reverse the global warming trend set in train by greenhouse gases released by fossil fuel combustion, by thinning the almost invisible cirrus clouds that trap radiation and keep the planet warm.
By Joe McCarthy
This past June was the third hottest June in recorded history—only 2016 and 2015 had hotter Junes.
The global average temperature has been surpassing the 20th century average for 41 straight years. "Record-breaking temperatures" has almost become a platitude since the turn of the century, yet the consequences of this shift are devastating communities and environments in new ways around the world.
By Joe McCarthy
Tony Maphosa, a Zimbabwean poacher, is accused of putting cyanide in watering holes and salt pans used by elephants numerous times over several years.
All told, his poisoning spree is said to have killed more than 100 elephants, according to Zimbabwean authorities who have been searching for Maphosa for four years.
By David Doniger
As the nation and the world swelter through another year of extraordinary heat, storms, drought and disrupted weather, Senators Sheldon Whitehouse and Brian Schatz introduced carbon fee legislation Wednesday to help curb the heat-trapping pollution that drives this dangerous climate disruption.
Representatives Earl Blumenauer and David Cicilline are introducing companion legislation in the House of Representatives.