Nationwide solar employment growing 10 times faster than rest of the economy
Environment California Research & Policy Center
California has more than 47,000 people employed manufacturing and installing pollution-free solar energy, according to a national Solar Jobs Census released today by The Solar Foundation. According to the analysis, California continues to rank 1st in nation for total solar jobs, with approximately one-third of all solar jobs in the country. Growth in the state’s solar jobs is expected to surge by over 22% by the end of 2014.
“The sun is an unlimited energy source that could provide all of our energy, without the air and water pollution associated with fossil fuels,” said Michelle Kinman, Clean Energy Advocate with Environment California Research & Policy Center. “This report shows that the California’s solar industry is putting people to work to meet a growing percentage of our energy needs with a pollution-free energy source that has no fuel costs.”
Solar is on the rise in California and across the country. This progress is directly attributable to the commitment by state leaders to the development of solar energy. Environment California released a report last year emphasizing that it is not the availability of sunlight that makes states solar leaders, but the degree to which state and local governments have created effective public policies.
“The sky’s the limit on solar power. California has made impressive strides toward a clean energy future, but still only a small fraction our energy comes from the sun,” said Michelle Kinman. “To take it to the next level, we need to rally around a bigger vision on solar while defending and improving the programs that work today.”
The Solar Foundation (TSF), an independent nonprofit solar research and education organization, today released its fourth annual National Solar Jobs Census, which found that the U.S. solar industry employed 142,698 Americans in 2013. That figure includes the addition of 23,682 solar jobs over the previous year, representing 19.9 percent growth in employment since September 2012. Solar employment grew 10 times faster than the national average employment growth rate of 1.9 percent in the same period. Statistics on all 50 states can be found on TSF’s interactive map, available at www.SolarStates.org. The National Solar Jobs Census 2013 and separate reports for CA, AZ and MN, including employment by legislative district, are available at www.tsfcensus.org.
Environment California Research & Policy Center is a statewide, nonprofit, environmental research and policy organization working to protect California’s air, water and open spaces. More information can be found at www.EnvironmentCaliforniaCenter.org.