“Rather than help the industry, the action would kill many thousands of American jobs and put a stop to billions of dollars in private investment,” SEIA President and CEO Abigail Ross Hopper said in a news release. “Our estimates show that even in the states where Suniva and its lone supporter, SolarWorld, have operations, if the petition succeeds, there would be many times more jobs lost than expected gains for two struggling companies.”
The U.S. would lose a third of its solar jobs if the Trump administration adopts tariffs under consideration by the U.S. International Trade Commission, according to data released by the Solar Energy Industries Association. Overall, an estimated 88,000 jobs would disappear if American manufacturer Suniva Inc. is successful in its trade case in favor of the new tariffs, SEIA said. … SEIA said that with tariffs, California would see about 15,800 lost jobs, the most of any state. South Carolina could lose 7,000 jobs, or 88 percent of its solar workforce, and Texas could lose 6,300 positions. Oregon could lose 5,800 jobs. Arizona, Florida, North Carolina and New York all could see more than 3,000 eliminated positions. The U.S. solar industry has about 260,000 total workers.
President Trump may be focused on saving coal miners, but solar continues to be the hot spot in today’s jobs market. Solar employment expanded last year 17 times faster than the total US economy, according to an International Renewable Energy Agency report published on Wednesday that cited data from the Solar Foundation. Overall, more than 260,000 people work in the solar industry, up by 24% from 2015.
The Solar Energy Industries Association, the lobby group, has warned that the tariffs would threaten thousands of jobs in occupations such as designing, installing and managing solar power systems, which account for about 85 per cent of the employment in the sector. Abigail Ross Hopper, president of the SEIA, said: “If demand goes down, which we think is a likely outcome [if the administration accedes to Suniva’s request], that will affect employment all across the supply chain, and all across the country.”
As of 2016, California had just over 100,000 solar jobs — a one-third increase over 2015’s figures. The U.S. as a whole added 50,000 solar jobs in 2016, a record in its own right. According to The Solar Foundation, the solar industry in the U.S. employs more than 260,000 workers nationwide — that’s more workers than Apple, Facebook, and Google combined.
A new report found the country has made some serious solar strides in 2016, particularly in 20 cities across the country. America’s “shining cities” helped the country attain 42,000 megawatts of solar energy capacity by the end of 2016 — enough energy to power 8.3 million average homes and slash annual carbon emissions by 52.3 million metric tons, the Frontier Group and the Environment America Research and Policy Center reported.
The U.S. solar industry employed 260,077 workers last year, a nearly 25% increase in the number of jobs from 2015. That jump was largely driven by a massive increase in solar panel installations, according to a report released Tuesday by the non-profit solar advocacy group The Solar Foundation. The rise in installations was caused by a rapid decrease in the cost of solar panels and unprecedented consumer demand, according to Andrea Luecke, president and executive director of The Solar Foundation.