Solar Power's Shining Moment

Solar Power's Shining Moment

Solar is currently growing faster than any other segment in the energy industry.
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Time for #Solar to Shine! #renewableenergy #energy via @SaraGBM @greenbuildermag

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Green Builder Media CEO, Sara Gutterman

Solar Panels

Green Builder Media

Wednesday, April 8, 2015 - 7:05am

CAMPAIGN: Ethical and Sustainable Living


LAST YEAR, a new solar system was installed in the U.S. every three minutes. Creative financing solutions and plummeting panel prices have made solar widely accessible for homeowners and businesses alike. And by next year, experts predict that solar will actually be the cheapest form of electricity in many U.S. states.

The solar industry is proving to be an essential engine of economic growth and job creation in our country. According to the National Solar Jobs Census 2014, the renewables industry “continues to exceed growth expectations, adding workers at a rate nearly 20 times faster than the overall economy and accounting for 1.3% of all jobs created in the U.S. over the past year. Our long-term research shows that solar industry employment has grown by 86% in the past five years, resulting in nearly 80,000 domestic living-wage jobs. As of November 2014, the solar industry employs 173,807 solar workers, representing a growth rate of 21.8% since November 2013. Over the next 12 months, employers surveyed expect to see total employment in the solar industry increase by 20.9% to 210,060 solar workers.”

Representing one out of every 78 jobs currently created in the US, the solar industry is flying high, blowing past the shrinking coal industry, which currently employs 93,185 Americans. And, the solar industry’s annual 31,000 new jobs trumps the entire oil and gas pipeline construction and extraction sector, which only added 19,217 jobs in 2014.

But even with its clear contribution to economic development and job creation, solar is still experiencing opposition from utilities and lawmakers, and the industry will continue to face challenges that may hinder its growth potential.