For at least a decade, real estate owners have been leasing the prime space on top of their buildings to utilities. One of the most popular uses for the vast, unused space is to lease roof area to telecommunications companies for installation of antennas, batteries and other equipment for cellular communications. The same can now be accomplished for rooftop solar energy proponents looking for space on which to install solar panels and supporting equipment.
In California, the dream is becoming a reality. California Public Utilities Commission, Southern California Edison (SCE), and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger are working to promote the use of empty roof space of commercial buildings for installation of rooftop solar energy technology equipment, including solar panels. Governor Schwarzenegger is envisioning a future in which, as he says, “commercial buildings statewide partnered with utilities …[will put] this solar technology on their rooftops, [and] it would set off a huge wave of renewable-energy growth.” Here is an example of how solar energy is working in the Golden State.
Photo from Flickr (Union Station Rooftop): http://www.flickr.com/photos/jmv/10224295/