Nearly 2/3 of Americans support a solar mandate for new homes

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Solar is easily the most popular energy source among Americans. And despite much of the noise in the press regarding California’s recent mandate that all newly built homes must come with rooftop solar, most Americans support such an idea for their own state.

A new poll released today by Morning Consult found that 32% of 2,201 adults polled expressed that they “somewhat” support mandatory solar on new homes in their state, with 31% strongly supporting it. That makes 63% that expressed some level of support.

11% somewhat opposed the measure, with another 11% strongly opposing it. 15% didn’t know or had no opinion.

The numbers were even stronger for Democrats, of which 73% expressed that they either “somewhat” or “strongly” support such a measure, but 57% of Republicans also expressed some degree of support, versus only 29% of Republicans in opposition.

Such cross-party support is notable. While Democrats frequently express stronger concern over climate change, Republican Mayor Rex Parris of Lancaster, California imposed the first rooftop solar mandate of any U.S. city in 2013.

In general younger respondents more strongly support mandatory solar on new homes, and those of who approve of Donald Trump’s job as president were less likely to support it, but such a mandate still won a majority of support across all demographic and political groups.

The analysis also shows a regional breakdown. While 61-64% of respondents in all regions expressed some level of support, those living in the West showed had the highest portion expressing strong support, at 35%, with those in the Northeast more tepid about the idea, with only 27% stating that they “strongly” support such a measure.

Another question was asked which specifically spelled out California’s policy and its likely financial impacts, and for this the responses were similar to the previous question.