If you had the biggest homelessness problem in the country would you make building homes cheaper or more expensive?
In Cal they are choosing to make home more expensive by requiring solar panels on all new homes. Using the govt to force people to buy things is great for the rich who buy such laws. But no so much for the average person buying a house. Next they will require solar panels be installed any time the home changes hands. I fail to see how adding 10K to the cost of building homes helps the homeless problem or anything by that matter.
Solar panels are not even that green when you take into account the energy needed to make them and the toxic wastes it produces,
"several incidents have linked the manufacture of these shining symbols of environmental virtue to a trail of chemical pollution. And it turns out that the time it takes to compensate for the energy used and the greenhouse gases emitted in photovoltaic panel production "
I am surprised that California is so late in the game to form a state agency to deal with the homeless problem.
I also read with interest the article noted in the OP regarding the pollution associated with the manufacturing of the panels. It would seem that our influence on that end is limited since they are being made in other countries.
It is sad that past lack of federal funding for both solar and wind technologies forced US companies to sell the technology to overseas interests. At that time the Republicans in power were skeptical of the future of green energy.
They could make wind more efficient by relating to it potential energy either by lifting water or massive weighs during high wind periods. But solar cells are not only a toxic waste mess but just melting silicon for the cell body means they will probably never make more energy that it costs to produce them.
England is doing great work with tidal surge hydro-electricity. We should too. Makes a lot more sense and is not near as ugly as wind or solar.
That is interesting that you mentioned that. When I was an engineering student back in the early seventies the materials engineering department was doing experiments on water related energy production. I will have to read up on what the Brits are doing now.