Policy Solution

Solar panels

Lead by Example

Overview:

Summary: Installing solar panel systems on rooftops provide the dual benefits of providing renewable energy as well as direct cooling to buildings. Governments can install solar panels on publicly-owned property to demonstrate effectiveness and encourage local residents to adopt solar. Solar energy can also help governments reduce their energy costs and save taxpayer dollars.

Implementation: Identify appropriate publicly-owned sites and install solar panels.

Considerations for Use: Solar panels can be applied in a diversity of climates and contexts with low maintenance costs. Governments may also consider installing solar on remediated brownfields or other under-utilized sites.

  • Policy Levers: The mechanism municipalities can use to actualize the intervention. These policy levers will likely be used in combination with each other.

    Lead by ExampleGovernments have ownership and jurisdiction over a range of assets (e.g. buildings and streets) and also serve as a direct employer, and contractor. This allows them to promote heat risk reduction and preparedness solutions and demonstrate their impact through leading by example with proactive interventions to make their assets, employment opportunities, and contracts heat-resilient.
  • Trigger Points: Opportunities for municipalities to implement risk reduction and preparedness interventions based on the policy lever, building on the United Nations Environment Programme triggers used in the Beating the Heat handbook (2021).

    Evaluating or initiating major city infrastructure projectsIncludes projects such as city transit, street or utilities construction / re-construction etc.
    Planned new developmentIncludes Greenfield or brownfield development or new construction
    Substantial rehabilitationIncludes the re-development or major renovation projects.
  • Intervention Type:
    Buildings and Built Form
  • Sectors:
    Buildings, Public Works,

    Impact:

  • Target Beneficiaries:
    Residents
  • Phase of Impact:
    Risk reduction and mitigation
  • Metrics:
    Amount of energy produced by solar energy; Energy savings

Implementation:

  • Intervention Scale:
    Building
  • Authority and Governance:
    City government
  • Implementation Timeline:
    Medium-term (3-9 Years)
  • Implementation Stakeholders:
    Array
  • Funding Sources:
    Public investment
  • Capacity to Act:
    Medium; High

    Benefits:

  • Cost-Benefit:
    Low
  • Public Good:
    Low
  • GHG Reduction:
    Medium
  • Co-benefits (Climate/Environmental):
    Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • Co-benefits (Social):
    Save on utilities; Create jobs