A new distinction

The growing popularity of roof-mounted photovoltaic (PV) system installations has spurred a bit of a turf war between electricians and roofing contractors, both of whom believe they have the right to perform such work. And as the trades compete for market share, building owners are becoming increasingly confused regarding whom to hire.

To help clarify the situation, NRCA and the Center for Environmental Innovation in Roofing have founded Roof Integrated Solar Energy (RISE) Inc. RISE certifies solar roofing professionals so they can demonstrate to building owners they have the skills, expertise and credentials needed to install roof-mounted PV systems.

Those earning RISE certification will be known as Certified Solar Roofing Professionals (CSRPs). To earn certification, an individual must be at least 18 years old, meet prerequisite experience and education criteria, complete an application form, sign a code of ethics and professional conduct, pay applicable fees and pass a written exam.

No course work is required to pass the exam; however, RISE offers information about the publications and classes that can help candidates prepare for the exam. The exam will focus on planning and implementing safety requirements; identifying structural, roof assembly and PV system design issues; applying basic electrical system principles and practices; estimating, contracting and selling roof-mounted PV systems; and managing and directing roof-mounted PV system installations.