Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Trees vs Solar Power

This morning while I was getting ready for work I heard an interesting story on NPR. Basically, in California somewhere, some guy asked his neighbor to cut down his trees because they were shading the solar panels in his back yard.

What's really wonderful is that there is a law in CA that says the neighbor with the trees has to do it.

Apparently, solar-guy put his panels in after tree-guy had planted 5 redwood trees in his yard. Most of solar-guy's panels are high enough that they aren't really affected by the trees, but there are some in his yard that are shaded now that the trees are 30 some-odd feet tall. But legally tree-guy has to cut down two of his trees.

Something about the whole situation has me scratching my head. It's not the law that Cali has, though it is kind of odd. If you are setting up your home to run on solar energy, you're obviously concerned about the environment, right? So... last time I checked trees were good for the planet. Not only good, but kind of important for the whole producing oxygen and reducing greenhouse gasses thing. Unless you're doing solar because you're a tight-wad and don't want to pay for your power anymore, forcing your neighbor to cut down his trees is just a little contradictory.

3 comments:

veganaron said...

... Hearing that makes me hate people just a little bit more...

Shani said...

I know this is short-term, non-proactive thinking, but ... what's wrong with trimming the trees? I mean, my second cousin swears her classmate's ex-boyfriend had an uncle who trimmed a tree once. Maybe it's just an urban legend, though.

Cassie the Great said...

Even if you trim, they still produce shade. We hate shade. Shade is baaaaad. Anyway, they're redwoods so they get, like, really tall. So it's, like, hard to reach high enough to, like, really trim them. So it's easier to just cut them down.