Wisconsin has more than 1,800 people employed manufacturing and installing pollution-free solar energy, according to a national Solar Jobs Census released yesterday by The Solar Foundation. According to the analysis, Wisconsin ranks 24th in nation for solar jobs.
“The sun is an unlimited energy source that could provide all of our energy without the air and water pollution associated with coal, oil and gas,” said Megan Severson with Wisconsin Environment. “This report shows that the solar industry is putting people to work to meet a growing percentage of our energy needs with a pollution-free energy source that has no fuel costs.”
Solar is on the rise in Wisconsin and across the country. This progress is directly attributable to the commitment by state and their leaders to the development of solar energy. Wisconsin Environment released a report last year emphasizing that it is not the availability of sunlight that makes states solar leaders, but the degree to which state and local governments have created effective public policies.
“The sky’s the limit on solar. But right now only a small fraction our energy comes from solar,” said Severson. “To take it to the next level, we need to rally around a bigger vision on solar while defending and improving the programs that work today.”
The Solar Foundation (TSF), an independent nonprofit solar research and education organization, yesterday released its fourth annual National Solar Jobs Census, which found that the U.S. solar industry employed 142,698 Americans in 2013. That figure includes the addition of 23,682 solar jobs over the previous year, representing 19.9 percent growth in employment since September 2012. Solar employment grew 10 times faster than the national average employment growth rate of 1.9 percent in the same period. Statistics on all 50 states can be found on TSF’s interactive map, available at www.SolarStates.org. The National Solar Jobs Census 2013 and separate reports for CA, AZ and MN, including employment by legislative district, are available at www.tsfcensus.org.
Wisconsin Environment is a statewide, citizen-based advocacy organization working for clean air, clean water and open spaces. www.WisconsinEnvironment.org