Ready for 100% Renewable Energy
This resolution supports the Sierra Club’s “Ready for 100%” campaign, and further supported the Sierra Club’s “Mayors for 100% Clean Energy” campaign by urging the 2017 U.S. Conference of Mayors participants to commit to 100% clean, renewable energy in their communities. The “Ready for 100%” campaign challenges local and regional governments across the United States to transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050 or if possible sooner.
Waving Building Permit Fees for Photovoltaic (PV)
The cost to install solar includes more than just the cost of panels and installation. It also includes the cost of other equipment as well as fees associated with permits and plan reviews. In an effort to reduce barriers to installing solar, the city has waived all PV related building permit fees.
Land Development and Permitting Fees – Renewable Energy
In addition to waiving building permit fees for PV, the city has also waived fees related to Land Use Board Approval. The fee for application for public hearing related only to a solar roof or a renewable energy system on an existing building shall be waived. If the application includes other components, the standard fee shall apply. Additionally, the fee per variances related only to a solar roof or a renewable energy system shall also be waived.
Height Exceptions to Allow for Solar Panels
This ordinance creates height exceptions to allow for solar panels, wind turbines on oceanfront properties, and sustainable roof systems. This removes a possible barrier to the installation of a renewable energy system.
Sustainability and Resiliency / Green Building
This ordinance requires all new construction over 7,000 square feet or ground floor additions to existing buildings over 10,000 square feet to be LEED Gold Certified or Future Living Institute Living Building Challenge or Petals Certified. Not only does this ordinance promote high performance sustainable building and development, but also encourages the installation of renewable energy through some of the possible credits. Learn more about the green building ordinance.
Solsmart Gold designation
The City of Miami Beach is a SolSmart-designated community. SolSmart is a program designed to recognize communities that have taken steps to make it easier for businesses and residents to go solar. Communities pursuing SolSmart designation are eligible for no-cost technical assistance from a team of national solar experts during the application process. This platform became possible through the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot initiative.
The SolSmart program aims to reduce solar “soft costs,” the non-hardware costs of going solar like permitting, financing, installation labor, and customer acquisition. These costs are passed on to solar customers and can increase the time and money it takes to install a solar energy system. The SolSmart designation program will provide high-profile, national recognition for communities that have made it cheaper and easier for solar customers to invest in solar energy. In addition, achieving designation will let solar companies know that a community is “open for business,” attracting new solar businesses and helping SolSmart communities share the economic development benefits attached to the solar industry.