On January 27, 2014, the GW Solar Institute released the 2013 National Solar Jobs Census with our partners at The Solar Foundation. Based on a comprehensive survey of over 15,000 solar business from across the US, the 2013 Census found that the solar industry added over 24,000 new jobs last year and that employment in the solar energy industry is growing 10 times faster than the national average.
Census findings were annouced via a press teleconference that featured former Colorado Governor Bill Ritter, SunPower President and CEO Tom Werner, and SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive.
Dozens of national and local outlets featured the Census results and some of the report’s statistics were used by the White House to augment points made by President Obama during his 2014 State of the Union speech.
Beginning at the 2:07 mark of the video, Obama states:
Now, it's not just oil and natural gas production that's booming; we're becoming a global leader in solar too. Every four minutes another American home or business goes solar, every panel pounded into place by a worker whose job can't be outsourced. Let's continue that progress with a smarter tax policy that stops giving $4 billion a year to fossil fuel industries that don't need it so we can invest more in fuels of the future that do.
In the enhanced broadcast by the White House, our statistics from the Solar Jobs Census appear side by side with President Obama. The graphic reads:
The solar industry added 23,000 jobs in the last year. Nearly half are installers who earn an average wage of $23 an hour.
Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz also issued a statement on the 2013 Solar Jobs Census:
This is an exciting time for the solar industry in the United States, made even more clear by the latest industry job figures. According to the Solar Foundation, today there are more than 140,000 Americans employed up and down the U.S. solar supply chain and across every state. Since 2010, the solar industry has created nearly 50,000 new American jobs and employment has grown nearly 20 percent in the last year alone.