Photovoltaic / Solar Permits and Guidelines
The County of Santa Clara and SolarApp+ provide near instant PV Solar permits for Residential Rooftop systems. See if you qualify.
Are you looking for ways to reduce energy consumption, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and save money on your energy bills in the long run? Solar thermal and solar electric energy generation are becoming an increasingly popular and viable way to do all this and more.
Solar power is an important part of the Santa Clara County Climate Change & Sustainability Program. We are committed to using renewable energy at County facilities and encourage homeowners, business owners and other entities with the unincorporated areas of the county to do the same.
Below is information about the kind and size of system is appropriate for your building, rebates and incentives, suppliers, contractors and much more.
Permits for PV Applications
Requirements for the PV submittal process:
- Single Family Residential – in Unincorporated Santa Clara County
- Flush Roof-Mount systems
- Small systems (10 kW or less)
Permit Information for Solar/PV Permits
Photovoltaic Permit Application Guidelines
Photovoltaic Inspection Checklist
Solar PV Signage Requirements:
- General Requirements
- Requirements for a PV System with String Inverter and no batteries
- Requirements for a Micro-Inverter PV System
Residential Solar Systems
County Program for Commercial Solar Facilities
In November 2010, the Board of Supervisors approved an update to the County's Zoning Ordinance to specifically address Commercial Solar Systems.
- Ordinance Provisions
- Environmental Initial Study
- Staff's white paper on Solar Power in Santa Clara County
For more information contact Leza Mikhail.
- Solar map showing solar potential in different areas of Santa Clara County
- Mapping of land use factors for commercial solar
- Text description of land use factors maps
Note: The solar insolation (kWh/m2/day) values on these maps is somewhat different from values shown on maps available though the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and other sources. The Planning Office calculated the values shown on these maps by factoring in terrain and southern exposure.
Resources & Links
- California Solar Center
- Consumer Energy Center
- Northern California Solar Energy Association
- Pacific Gas & Electric
- California Solar Initiative
- PV Power Resource Site
- The Rahus Institute
- Solar Living Institute
- US Department of Energy
Financing, Rebates & Incentives
- For an extensive list of financial incentives and programs throughout the Country, check the Database of State Incentives for Renewable Energy (DSIRE)
- Visit the California Solar Center to find detailed information regarding tax credits, including eligibility requirements, legislative references and tax forms
- Visit California Solar Initiative, brought to you by California's Public Utilities Commission and Energy Commission, for information on rebates, tax credits, and incentives for solar energy systems in California
- California Energy Commission Energy Efficiency Financing Program