This is one of the craziest and most depressing things I have recently read. In a generally sunny article about the huge potential of solar power in the suburbs, where rooftop is abundant, a new interest group against solar power in the United States is identified:

“About half of all American homes are members of homeowners associations, and 90 percent of homeowners associations ban solar installations on homes, generally for aesthetic reasons and because it could decrease the value of the home.”

So, let us walk through the incentives. Homeowners want to reduce their electricity bills and perhaps contribute to climate change mitigation so that they can feel good about themselves. That is great. However, if they are a member of an association, they may not be able to do so. Apparently these associations are populated by people who find solar panels ugly and/or believe they reduce property values.

The good news is that if you are a member of such an association, this is your opportunity to fight for what is right. In principle, these association could be major forces in the rather epic battle to promote solar power. Since their members ultimately determine their policies, this is a great opportunity for a progressive member to become an activist. This is one of the very rare moments in my life that I almost wish I owned my home!

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