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Old 07-05-2018, 06:29 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
2,778 posts, read 1,062,562 times
Reputation: 5986

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Every morning when I clean stalls, I listen to NPR (it just seems so appropriate). About 15 y/a they had a segment about the dilemma that presented itself to an assistant DA in CA, summarized for you here:


CA has a green law that says you can't obstruct the sun from a neighboring PV installation. Eg- if your neighbor has solar panels on the roof of his one story house, you can't build a three story house that will block his access to sunlight.


So, this situation presented itself: a guy decided to put up a solar array on his roof and had it professionally installed. His neighbor had a planting of young redwoods along the lot line just south of the house with the new panels. The trees were only a couple yrs old and only 8 ft tall at he time that the solar was installed.


Well, redwood trees being redwood trees, they grew rather quickly, and within a few yrs had grown tall enough to block the sun. The guy called authorities, insisting the trees be chopped down. The Ass't DA interviewed by NPR stated his dilemma: the law was in place to "protect the environment" but the remedy here would be to chop down the trees. Is that environmentally friendly?


How would you handle it?
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Old 07-05-2018, 07:03 AM
 
Location: Des Moines Metro
5,055 posts, read 6,027,726 times
Reputation: 9437
Can redwood trees be "topped" so that they no longer grow vertically? If so, trim and top. If not, cut them down and either replace them with trees that can be topped or native trees that don't grow as tall.

This situation smacks of poor planning. Didn't anyone putting in the solar array notice the new trees? Action needed to be taken then, not years later.
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Old 07-05-2018, 08:26 PM
 
9,266 posts, read 11,857,046 times
Reputation: 14542
I fail to see the problem and fail to understand why there is any issue. "The The Solar Shade Act provides limited protection to solar energy system owners from shading caused by trees and shrubs on adjacent properties. The law seeks to prevent a property owner from allowing trees or shrubs to shade an existing solar energy system installed on a neighboring property, provided the shading trees or shrubs were planted after the solar collecting device was installed." (AB 2321, 1978).

So if the trees existed before the solar system was installed, the protections under the Act does not apply and the trees have the greater right.
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Old 07-11-2018, 02:40 AM
 
Location: British Columbia ♥ 🍁 ♥
7,261 posts, read 6,594,669 times
Reputation: 14274
Quote:

So if the trees existed before the solar system was installed, the protections under the Act does not apply and the trees have the greater right.

This ^. First come, first served. The neighbor who planted the trees is in the right to keep his trees because the trees were there first.


.
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Old 07-11-2018, 09:52 AM
 
9,266 posts, read 11,857,046 times
Reputation: 14542
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoisite View Post
This ^. First come, first served. The neighbor who planted the trees is in the right to keep his trees because the trees were there first.
.
and I'm totally confused how some Assistant DA wouldn't even know what the law states. Seems the story was more to create controversy and not so much based on the actual law.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:31 AM
 
Location: DC
6,530 posts, read 6,466,290 times
Reputation: 3137
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabrrita View Post
and I'm totally confused how some Assistant DA wouldn't even know what the law states. Seems the story was more to create controversy and not so much based on the actual law.
I believe the law when originally passed was ambiguous. The legislature amended it to clarify.
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Old 07-11-2018, 10:37 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
2,778 posts, read 1,062,562 times
Reputation: 5986
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabrrita View Post
... Seems the story was more to create controversy and not so much based on the actual law.

It was, after all, NPR--opinion first, then adjust data to suit.



As usual on this forum, unless the subject is saving the planet by sorting your garbage before they throw it most of it in the same dump anyway or saving the planet by not buying tap water in plastic bottles or about seeking praise for attending a "Stop the Oil Pipeline" protest (which you drove to alone in your SUV), this topic didn't generate much interest.



I posted it because I was amazed when we discussed it on an "environmental forum" 15 yrs ago, the sides, as usual, where pretty well demarcated by political tendencies: conservatives/libertarians thought like you two that the remedy was obvious: all burden lay on the stupid home owner & installer who should have anticipated the problem. Amazingly, on that forum, the TreeHugger types thought the tree owner should either remove the trees or pay to move the other guy's PV installation. !!??? How does one justify that position?
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Old 07-12-2018, 01:52 AM
 
Location: British Columbia ♥ 🍁 ♥
7,261 posts, read 6,594,669 times
Reputation: 14274
More to the point, what was the final outcome?


.
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Old 07-13-2018, 07:00 AM
 
12,886 posts, read 15,445,468 times
Reputation: 14854
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zoisite View Post
This ^. First come, first served.


.
Wouldn't it be nice if that's how things worked???
Too bad in this day and age it means nothing.
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