Governor signs million solar roofs legislation
From left, Senator Kevin Murray (D-Los Angeles), Assemblymember
Lloyd Levine (D-Van Nuys), Assemblymember Sam Blakeslee (R-San
Luis Obispo), Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, Solar Initiative
Coordinator Bernadette Del Chiaro,
Photo by John Decker, Office of Governor Schwarzenegger
From the Office of the Governor of California
August 22, 2006
Concluding a two-year effort to help make California the nation's
leader in solar energy, Gov. Schwarzenegger signed SB 1 by Senator
Kevin Murray (D-Los Angeles), putting the finishing touches on
the Governor's Million Solar Roofs Plan.
"When I ran for governor, I vowed to make the environment
the centerpiece of my administration and turn back the clock on
pollution," said Schwarzenegger.
"My Million Solar Roofs Plan will provide 3,000 megawatts
of additional clean energy and reduce the output of greenhouse
gasses by 3 million tons which is like taking one million cars
off the road. I want to thank Sen. Kevin Murray for his hard work
in helping me make California the leader on solar power again."
Last year, the governor asked the California Public Utilities
Commission (CPUC) to implement his Million Solar Roofs plan. Dubbed
the California Solar Initiative by the CPUC, the plan will lead
to one million solar roofs in California by 2018.
Specifically, SB 1 implements the portions of the Million Solar
Roofs plan that the CPUC does not have the authority to mandate,
Expanding the Program: The current implementation of the Million
Solar Roofs plan only applies to customers of Pacific Gas and
Electric, Southern California Edison and San Diego Gas and Electric.
SB 1 expands the program to customers of the municipal-owned utilities
such as SMUD and LADWP.
Crediting Consumers for Excess Power Produced: Consumers who
install solar panels on their homes and businesses can sell excess
energy back to power companies for credit on their monthly bills.
This credit is a key incentive for consumers to install solar
panels. Currently, the cap on the number of customers who can
use this option is .5 percent. SB 1 raises this to 2.5 percent.
Raising the ceiling will provide part of the needed financial
incentive to bring more solar power on to the grid.
Making Solar Power a Standard Item on New Homes: SB 1 would require
a developer of more than 50 new single family homes offer the
option of a solar energy system to all customers beginning January
One million solar roofs will greatly increase the state's rooftop
solar energy capacity, providing the output equivalent of five
modern electric power plants. This program's 3,000 megawatt goal,
taken together with other aggressive solar initiatives such as
requiring utilities to acquire 20 percent of the power used within
the state from renewable sources, will make California once again
a world leader in solar power.
Since taking office, the Governor has made it a priority to develop
a self-sustaining solar industry for California. In 2004, he introduced
the Million Solar Roofs Initiative, which included $2.9 billion
in incentives to homeowners and building owners who install solar