SOLAR INDUSTRY JOBS
- As of November 2014, the solar industry paid living wages to 173,807 solar workers, representing a growth rate of 21.8% since November 2013. One out of every 78 new 2014 US jobs were created in the solar industry. In addition, these jobs support 531,200 indirect and induced impact jobs, bringing the combined total to 705,000 jobs.
- U.S. solar jobs are projected to reach 210,060 by year-end 2015.
- Average wage for solar installers is $20-$24/ hour; manufacturers pay assemblers nearly $18/hour; salaries for solar sales people range from $30 to more than $60/hour; and solar designers receive between $30-40/hour.
- 21.6% of 2014 solar workers were women.
- The solar installation sector is already larger than well-established sectors of fossil fuel generation, such as coal mining (93,185 – 133,870 jobs). In addition, the solar installation sector added nearly 50% more jobs in 2014 than the total created by both the oil and gas pipeline construction industry (10,529) and the crude petroleum and natural gas extraction industry (8,688).[1 scroll down]
- The solar industry will add roughly the same number of jobs in 2015 (36,153) as the much larger fossil fuel industry (37,206).
SOLAR ENERGY IN CALIFORNIA
- Presently, there are 2,226 solar companies at work throughout the California, employing 54,700.
- The California residential solar panel market continued to flourish in Q1, 2015 with installed system prices dropping 4 percent year-over-year – and down nearly 50 percent since 2010. The upswing in residential installations is expected to continue in the foreseeable future, especially in light of a recent report by the California Energy Commission, which shows that more than a quarter of all new homes being built in Southern California are being constructed with solar energy systems.
- With potential markets (California, etc.) for power generated by Montana coal-fire facilities drying up, and with California requiring more (50%) renewables in the mix of power sold there, Montana will need to provide a greater percent of green electrons than now available if it is to sell power out of state.
WIND INDUSTRY JOBS
The U.S. wind manufacturing sector now employs nearly 20,000 workers in more than 500 facilities across 43 states. In addition, 53,000 other jobs exist in project development, construction, operations, and other parts of the wind industry, bringing the total to 73,000 jobs.
The U.S. wind industry drove $12 billion in private investment in 2014, for a total of more than $100 billion since 2008.
For a full report on US & Montana wind potential click here for the US Department of Energy’s March 2015 Wind Vision Report
HYDROPOWER INDUSTRY EMPLOYMENT
The hydropower industry currently accounts for approximately 200,000-300,000 jobs according to a study by Navigant Consulting Inc. And according to the same study, with the right policies, the industry could add 1.4 million new cumulative direct, indirect and induced full time equivalents (FTE) jobs by 2025.
To show you want climate justice for fossil fuel workers as well as the rest of us during the transition to 80% renewable electricity by 2050, please sign to support this ballot initiative when the paper version becomes available for signing by clicking HERE.