Feeds

Treehuggers lose legal fight to solar-powered neighbour

Environ-mental Prius pair battle plugdrive sun-chum

SANS - Survey on application security programs

Wrangling Californian neighbours have recently concluded a bitter six-year legal battle, as a judge ordered a treehugging couple's lovingly-tended redwoods cut down in order to prevent them shading solar panels installed by the man next door.

Prius driver Richard Treanor, owner of the proscribed foliage, said the decision wasn't ecologically sound. The lost redwoods, he argued, had been a carbon sink, a wildlife habitat and had served to cool the air around them. He and his wife Carolyn Bissett weren't against solar power, he said, "but we think there's a rational way to implement it."

His neighbour Mark Vargas, whose $70,000 solar panels now operate at full efficiency, said that the tree-loving duo had been selfishly snaffling his sunlight.

"I think it's unfair that a neighbor can take away this source of energy from another neighbor," he told AP. Vargas added that it would take acres of trees to match his rooftop and back-garden solar panels in terms of carbon reductions. He also considered that he had out-greened Treanor and Bissett's low-emissions Prius hybrid, having purchased a plug-in electric car.

After years of legal scuffling, a California judge ruled that Treanor and Bissett had violated the state's Solar Shade Control Act, which says residents have to keep their plants from shading more than ten per cent of a neighbour's solar panels between the hours of 10am and 2pm. The couple are the first to be convicted under the 30-year-old law.

Trees already in place when solar panels are set up don't have to be cut down, but new growth causing shading is unlawful once the panels are in place. It seems that two of Treanor and Bissett's redwoods grew in an illegal fashion and had to be chopped down.

Treanor said the law was unfair, as his trees had been planted before Vargas installed his panels. He said the Act meant that a person could "suddenly become a criminal the day a tree grows big enough to shade a solar panel".

Legal experts predicted that such disputes would become more frequent, driven by large state subsidies for home solar-power kit. Such environ-mental* disputes might soon be an everyday Californian event.

Read the AP report here. ®

*Hyphen on purpose

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
So, just how do you say 'the mutt's nuts' in French?
Vital linguistic question interrupts LOHAN spaceplane mission
95 floors in 43 SECONDS: Hitachi's new ultra-high-speed lift
Guangzhou skyscraper denizens to hold on to hats
Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey
Science no match for religion, politics, business interests
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
STEALTHY NANOROBOTS dress up as viruses, prepare to sneak into YOUR BODY
Cloaking techniques nicked from viruses tackle roadblocks on way to medical frontier
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.