Q: What does the State of Washington Energy Code give points for Renewable Electric Energy?

A: For each 1200 kWh of electrical generation provided annually by on-site wind or solar equipment a ½ a point credit shall be allowed, up to 3 credits maximum can be earned. Generation shall be calculated as follows:

For solar electric systems, the design shall be demonstrated to meet this requirement using the National Renewable Energy Laboratory calculator PVWATTs. Documentation noting solar access shall be included on the building plans.

For wind generation projects designs shall document annual power generation based on the following factors:

The wind turbine power curve: average annual wind speed at the site: frequency distribution of the wind speed at the site and height of the tower.

To qualify to claim this credit, the building permit drawings shall specify the option being selected and shall show the photovoltaic or wind turbine equipment type, provide documentation of solar and wind access, and include a calculation of the minimum annual energy power production.

What we have found both using wind and sun as power sources; we needed to work with those that understood not only the technical aspects, but also the municipality needs. Solar is starting to hit its stride. Many of our clients are installing solar systems. We have installed two wind systems. These are a bit harder to justify mainly because you need a consistent pattern of wind to make the investment worthwhile.

Remember, small homes (<1500 sq.ft.) you need .5 points, Medium sized homes (1501 to 4999 sq. need 1.5 points and large homes (greater than 5000 sq.ft.) need 2 points.


Please submit questions to jon@quailhomes.com Jon can be reached direct at 360.907.5800. Tune into Green Building with Jon Girod on 1550 a.m. on Saturdays at 9 am. See you next week!