Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Rooftop Solar Panels Nixed by Local Board

In the very upscale suburban village of Scarsdale, New York, the application of a couple who wanted to take advantage of alternative energy and install solar panels on the roof of their “cozy” new 8,000 square foot house was turned down by the Architectural Review Board. The reason for the rejection as reported by The Journal News was that “More than a dozen neighbors sent a petition to the board saying the solar panels were not in keeping with the character of the neighborhood and might cause glare. The Architectural Review Board agreed that the panels in question would "negatively impact the aesthetics of the community." I agree with the editorial comments in the paper about this issue which said that “The board should make it easier, not harder, for homeowners and homebuilders who are trying to be energy-responsible.” On the other hand, given the predicament we are in as the climate crisis builds an obvious question to raise is the following: How energy responsible is it to build an 8,000 square foot house in the first place?

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