WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Solar Energy Industries Association® (SEIA®) today highlighted initial findings from The Solar Foundation’s (TSF) third annual National Solar Jobs Census showing that solar energy jobs have experienced strong growth in the U.S. over the past year, despite global economic challenges. The full National Solar Jobs Census 2012, with analysis of employment trends across the entire solar industry is scheduled for release on Nov. 14, 2012 by TSF, a nonprofit research institution located in Washington, D.C.
Initial results from the 2012 census found that the solar industry now employs 119,016 Americans across all 50 states, having grown 13.2 percent over last year during difficult economic times across the nation. In 2011, the solar energy industry employed 105,145 workers, while 93,502 were employed by solar companies in 2010.
Census participants named strong federal solar policy, such as the solar investment tax credit, as one of the most important factors driving growth of solar jobs over the past 12 months. Additionally, one-third of respondents cited the continued decline in solar energy prices as the primary driver of employment growth. State pro-solar policies, including renewable portfolio standards, and the popularity of new third-party system ownership models were other factors creating jobs.
“The solar energy industry is creating jobs in America when we need them most,” said Rhone Resch, president and CEO of SEIA. "The rapid growth of jobs in the solar industry clearly demonstrates that smart policies, including the federal investment tax credit, are putting Americans back to work. In addition to jobs, these policies are driving down the cost of solar and providing a clean, reliable energy choice for millions of homeowners and businesses.”
- National Solar Jobs Census 2012 Executive Summary
- U.S. Solar Jobs Census Finds Unemployment Soars as U.S. Economy Lags (Oct. 17, 2011):
- SEIA Statement on 2010 Solar Jobs Census (Oct. 13, 2010):
- SEIA/GTM Research Q2 SMI report on industry growth (Sept. 10, 2012): http://www.seia.org/news/report-us-solar-market-spikes-q2-2012-more-doubling-q2-2011-market-size
- See real people in real solar jobs
Established in 1974, the Solar Energy Industries Association® is the national trade association of the U.S. solar energy industry. Through advocacy and education, SEIA® is building a strong solar industry to power America. As the voice of the industry, SEIA works with its 1,100 member companies to make solar a mainstream and significant energy source by expanding markets, removing market barriers strengthening the industry and educating the public on the benefits of solar energy. Visit SEIA online at www.seia.org.
Monique Hanis, MHanis@SEIA.org, 202-556-2885
Susan DeVico, SusanDV@aol.com, 510-339-1527