California Ranks 1st in U.S. for Solar Jobs

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50+ California Leaders Endorse Governor Brown’s Clean Energy Vision

Environment California

California – Today, Environment California released new data from The Solar Foundation showing that California has the most solar-related jobs in the country, with an estimated 25,000 people employed by over 3,500 establishments.  Environment California also released a list of over 50 elected officials who support Governor Brown’s pioneering vision to build 12,000 megawatts of local clean energy – enough energy to cover a million solar roofs – by 2020.  The list of endorsers includes Congressman Henry Waxman, Los Angeles City Council President Eric Garcetti and Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, among other leading voices across the state.  (Full list below)

“This report shows that the solar industry has maintained strong growth over the past 12 months and is projected to keep growing at a much faster pace than the overall U.S. economy,” said Michelle Kinman, clean energy advocate for Environment California. “We applaud Governor Brown and the growing number of California leaders who are working to ensure that California continues to be a solar leader, accelerating the environmental and economic benefits of further growth in the industry.”

The new jobs data comes from The Solar Foundation’s National Solar Jobs Census 2011: A Review of the U.S. Solar Workforce, which quantifies current employment and projected growth of the solar workforce in the United States.

In addition to the data on California, the report finds that:

  • Nationwide, there are more than 100,000 solar workers at more than 17,000 different locations;
  • This represents an overall growth rate of 6.8 percent over the past year, nearly ten times higher than the national average employment growth rate of 0.7 percent;
  • The solar industry is expected to continue rapid growth over the next year, increasing solar workers by almost 24 percent, or by approximately 24,000 jobs in 2012; and,
  • This growth represents added jobs across all sectors of the solar industry – from installation and sales to manufacturing and trade jobs.

 “The solar industry is a strong and growing segment of our national economy,” said Andrea Luecke, executive director of The Solar Foundation. “We expect even greater growth in the foreseeable future. But policymakers, workforce training providers, and the industry must work together to continue creating good jobs for skilled workers.”

“The sky’s the limit when it comes to what California can do with solar power,” concluded Kinman.  “As local and state leaders voice their support for solar, there’s every reason to believe that California can get past the special interest opposition to a robust, consumer-oriented solar power market for the long-term.”

Over 50 elected officials from California have signed on to say: 

“Yes! I endorse Governor Brown’s pioneering vision to build 12,000 megawatts of clean energy – enough solar energy to cover a million solar roofs – by 2020.  By building solar on houses, apartment buildings, offices, schools and warehouses across California, we can create green jobs, reduce air pollution, and generate clean energy to power our lives.”  

Congressman Howard Berman- Van Nuys, Los Angeles        
Congresswoman Judy Chu – El Monte, Los Angeles    
Congresswoman Janice Hahn – Los Angeles    
Congressman Henry Waxman – Los Angeles    
Senator Fran Pavley – Santa Monica    
Assemblymember Steven Bradford – Inglewood    
Assemblymember Betsy Butler – El Segundo    
Assemblymember Ricardo Lara – South Gate    
Assemblymember Warren Furutani – Long Beach    
City Council President Eric Garcetti – Los Angeles    
Council President Pro Tempore Jan Perry – Los Angeles    
Councilmember Tony Cardenas – Los Angeles    
Councilmember Paul Krekorian – Los Angeles    
Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky – Los Angeles County    
Mayor Micheal O’Leary – Culver City    
Assemblymember Mike Eng – Monterey Park    
Assemblymember Roger Dickinson – Sacramento    
Mayor Kevin Johnson – Sacramento    
Vice Mayor Bonnie Pannell – Sacramento    
Councilmember Steve Cohn – Sacramento    
Councilmember Jay Schenirer – Sacramento
Assemblymember Mariko Yamada   
Mayor Ronald O. Loveridge – Riverside    
Assemblymember Wilmer Amina Carter – Rialto   
Mayor Patrick Morris – San Bernardino    
Congressman Mike Honda – San Jose    
Assemblymember Jim Beall – San Jose    
Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen – San Jose    
Councilmember Kansen Chu – San Jose    
Councilmember Rose Herrera – San Jose    
Councilmember Ash Karla – San Jose                
Assemblymember Michael Allen – Santa Rosa    
Assemblymember Das Williams – Santa Barbara    
Assemblymember Luis A. Alejo – Salinas    
Mayor Ryan Coonerty – Santa Cruz    
Vice Mayor Don Lane – Santa Cruz    
Councilmember Terrazas – Santa Cruz    
Senator Michael Rubio – Fresno    
Assemblymember Henry Perea – Fresno    
Congressman Bob Filner – San Diego    
Assemblymember Marty Block – Lemon Grove    
Councilmember David Alvarez – San Diego    
Councilmember Marti Emerald – San Diego    
Council President Larry Reid – Oakland    
Councilmember Rebecca Kaplan – Oakland    
Councilmember Pat Kernighan – Oakland    
Councilmember Libby Schaaf – Oakland    
Vice Mayor Michael Kasperzak – Mountain View    
Councilmember Shawn Marshall – Mill Valley    
Councilmember John Reed – Fairfax    
Councilmember David Weinsoff – Fairfax    
Assemblymember Bob Wieckowski – Fremont    
Congresswoman Lynn Woolsey – Petaluma    
Congresswoman Jackie Speier – San Francisco/San Mateo    
Assemblymember Jerry Hill – San Mateo    
Assemblymember Nancy Skinner – Berkeley    
Mayor Tom Bates – Berkeley    
Councilmember Jesse Arreguin – Berkeley    
Councilmember Laurie Capitelli – Berkeley    
Councilmember Susan Wengraf – Berkeley    
Councilmember Kriss Worthington – Berkeley