The ‘Solar Suburbs’ of the Future

October 07, 2015

A green, low-carbon suburb is possible in the future, and signs from current developments of American suburbia suggest that many are on the right track, though a full-blown “solar suburb” won’t be the norm for some time.

Author Marc Gunther offers glimpses of the so-called solar suburbs in a report for Environment 360, a publication of the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies.

Gunther defines the solar suburbs as an area where “solar panels cover roofs, electric vehicles sit in garages, energy-efficient homes are outfitted with batteries to store electricity, and a smart two-way electricity system enables people to drive to work and discharge power from their electric cars at times of peak energy demand.”

“In Palm Springs, California, rooftop solar panels are standard in a new community of 42 energy-efficient homes built by Far West Industries of Santa Ana,” he writes. “In Colorado, residents of Adams, Boulder and Denver counties are taking advantage of a group buying program called Solar Benefits Colorado that offers discounts on solar panels from a company called Sunrun, and on an electric car, the Leaf, from a local Nissan dealer.”

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