Planning for Solar Energy in Halifax Neighbourhoods
MetadataShow full item record
Solar energy is the cleanest and most abundant energy resource that does not contribute to global warming (Zaidi, 2009, p. 3). Halifax has good resources of solar energy and high energy demand (Natural Resources Canada, 2014; Halifax, 2007, pp. 38-40). Halifax Regional Municipal Planning Strategy 2015 places emphasis on energy planning including using solar energy (Halifax, 2015a, p. 39). Solar City, Solar Hot Water and Solar Hot Air are three ongoing programs related to solar energy in Halifax, which implement rooftop solar collectors. Building forms largely determine the amount of solar radiation received on roofs. In this study, I examined impacts of seven building form factors: layout organization, average roof area, building coverage, floor to area ratio (FAR), average building height, roof orientation and roof shape on rooftop solar suitability in select residential blocks in Halifax Peninsula using ArcGIS. Rooftop solar suitability value (Wh/m^2/day) is the total amount of solar radiation energy received on building rooftops during a given time, obtained from the Solar Suitability Map provided by Halifax Regional Municipality. Key findings are: low-rise blocks with high site coverage receive the most solar access on rooftops; second, in high-rise blocks, lower site coverage and uniform layout organizations are preferred.; third, larger and flatter roofs receive more sunlight.