U.S : Solar Will Create 200k Jobs in 2 Years
With unemployment on everyone’s mind, the Obama administration hasbeen touting “green” projects as a source of new jobs. Now the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) has confirmed that some government programs can do just that — create jobs.
Recently the SEIA released an independent study predicting thatextending the government’s Treasury Grant Program (TGP) and SolarManufacturing Investment Tax Credit by two years will create anadditional 200,000 new American jobs.
Extending TGP will also create 10 gigawatts of new solar installation by 2016 – enough to power 2 million homes. A recent study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory also found that TGP “has provided significant economic value” andpredicted high employment levels in renewable energy industries.
“Unemployment across the country remains near 10 percent, while theconstruction industry is suffering at nearly 22 percent unemployment,”said Rhone Resch, President and CEO of SEIA.
“But during the last year, the solar industry has been one of thebright spots in our economy with the creation of 17,000 new jobs. Thesejobs were created by the Recovery Act, and it’s time for Congress toextend the programs that have given new opportunity for Americans in the solar industry.”
The study also predicted which states would gain the most jobs fromthe increased solar work: California (60,000 new jobs); Michigan (24,000 new jobs); Ohio, Oregon and Texas gaining over 13,000 new jobs each;Arizona, Colorado, and Florida each gaining roughly 10,000 new jobs;Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, andWashington each adding about 5,000 new jobs; Nevada, New Jersey, andTennessee each adding more than 3,000 new jobs; and Connecticut andHawaii each adding more than 1,500 new jobs.
“The clean energy grant program created in last year’s stimulus billallowed enough renewable energy to come on-line to power four cities the size of Seattle and create over 140,000 new jobs,” said Senator MariaCantwell (D-WA).
“Extension of the Treasury Grant program is essential to continuingour nascent economic recovery and moving to a cleaner, more distributed21st century energy system. Tens of thousands of jobs hinge oncontinuing this successful program, including thousands of new solarjobs in Washington State in the next two years. These are high-payingjobs that our economy needs.”
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