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New Mexico

New Mexico

Incentives/Policies for Renewables & Efficiency

Printable Version
Solar Easements & Rights Laws   

Last DSIRE Review: 08/01/2014
Program Overview:
State: New Mexico
Incentive Type: Solar/Wind Access Policy
Eligible Renewable/Other Technologies: Passive Solar Space Heat, Solar Water Heat, Solar Space Heat, Solar Thermal Electric, Solar Thermal Process Heat, Photovoltaics, Solar Pool Heating
Applicable Sectors: Commercial, Industrial, Residential, Nonprofit, Schools, Local Government, State Government, Fed. Government
Web Site:
Authority 1:
Date Enacted:
Date Effective:
N.M. Stat. § 47-3-1 et seq.
1977 (subsequently amended)
Authority 2:
Date Enacted:
N.M. Stat. § 3-18-32

New Mexico's Solar Rights Act (1977) and Solar Recordation Act (1983) allow property owners to create solar easements for the purpose of protecting and maintaining proper access to sunlight. The Solar Rights Act established the right to use solar energy as a property right. The solar right prevents neighboring property owners from constructing new buildings or planting new trees which would block their access to the sun.

The Solar Recordation Act describes the procedures for filing a solar right through the County Clerk's Office. The property owner seeking the solar right must give advanced notice to the adjacent property owners, who are entitled to contest the claim. Once awarded, the solar right is attached to the property and will remain in effect even if the property is sold. The solar right, however, can be bought and sold separately from the property. This allows a neighboring property owner to purchase the solar right and then cancel it. The Solar Rights Act and the Solar Recordation Act also include provisions allowing local governments to create their own ordinances or zoning rules pertaining to the protection of solar rights.

In May 2007, S.B. 1031 strengthened solar access rights in New Mexico by limiting the ability of a county or municipality to restrict the placement of solar collectors unless the location is within a historic district. S.B. 1031 also voided all covenants and restrictions (from July 1, 1978 forward) that effectively prohibit the installation of solar collectors.

More information is available in this brochure and at the website listed above.

  Vincent Barrera
New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department
Energy Conservation and Management Division
Phone: (505) 476-3323
Web Site:
NCSU - home
Disclaimer: The information presented on the DSIRE web site provides an unofficial overview of financial incentives and other policies. It does not constitute professional tax advice or other professional financial guidance, and it should not be used as the only source of information when making purchasing decisions, investment decisions or tax decisions, or when executing other binding agreements. Please refer to the individual contact provided below each summary to verify that a specific financial incentive or other policy applies to your project.

While the DSIRE staff strives to provide the best information possible, the DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. make no representations or warranties, either express or implied, concerning the accuracy, completeness, reliability or suitability of the information. The DSIRE staff, the N.C. Solar Center, N.C. State University and the Interstate Renewable Energy Council, Inc. disclaim all liability of any kind arising out of your use or misuse of the information contained or referenced on DSIRE Web pages.

Copyright 2014 - 2015 North Carolina State University, under NREL Subcontract No. XEU-0-99515-01. Permission granted only for personal or educational use, or for use by or on behalf of the U.S. government. North Carolina State University prohibits the unauthorized display, reproduction, sale, and/or distribution of all or portions of the content of the Database of State Incentives for Renewables and Efficiency (DSIRE) without prior, written consent.