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National Permitting Process


Q:

Hi Sean,
Big picture here, in efforts to help deploy more solar in the residential market, do you foresee a national permit standard ever being adopted? I know of a few states who have moved to a statewide standard, bringing down cost of permit and turnaround times.
Also appreciate your breaking NEC into digestible sections (less intimidating).
Thanks again

A:

I think that it is part of our political culture. 50 states, 50 state governments and then many many more municipalities. Everyone on the ground would like having a normal permitting standard, but that standard would have to be individually adopted and I do not think that the AHJs are going to want to give up their power.
You could argue that the NEC is a way that we are unified, sort of like the constitution for electric codes.
The www.solarabcs.org expedited permit process and the Sunshot Initiative are attempts to harmonize solar permitting and bring down the price of solar. I always try to do the expedited permit process with new AHJs and many of them have their own way of doing things.
You can find information and contribute to a database at www.solarpermit.org
We could adopt the German way and just have a 4-page form for installers to fill out after they install the system.
I think I am going to propose an amendment to the US Constitution. The Right to Have Solar!
Thanks,
Sean White



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