Massachusetts looks to follow California with solar mandate for new homes

A pair of bills moving through the Massachusetts Legislature would require solar panels on most new construction in the state.

While some in the building and real estate industry argue the measures could make housing less affordable in a market that is already notoriously expensive, supporters say the move is necessary if the state is to meet its ambitious carbon-cutting goals.

“Our building sector is going to be one of the toughest sectors to fully decarbonize,” said Deborah Donovan, Massachusetts director for environmental nonprofit the Acadia Center. “We don’t want to miss any opportunities on buildings we’re going to be living with for the next 50 or 80 years.”

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