China's Solar-Powered City: "A combination of regulations and public education spurred the broad adoption of solar heaters. The city mandates all new buildings to incorporate solar panels, and it oversees the construction process to ensure proper installation. To raise awareness, the city held open seminars and ran public advertising on television."
This is an ordinary city in China but the product of three key factors. As the article points out the convergence of government policy, local industry and strong political leadership made it possible. The city has the equivalent of one half megawatt of water electric water heaters. If an ordinary city and China can do this, why can't we do it in the US? We are in the process of trying to implement additional solar capability on our house but our little town can not be called progressive on this issue. While there are a few solar water heaters in the town there is not one major photovoltaic panel that I have been able to spot and I doubt seriously if the town will welcome our implementation with open arms. I hope I am just being overly pessimistic.