Pennsylvania Ready for More Solar Job Growth with Community Solar
Vote Solar urges continued Statehouse leadership, expanding jobs and access to local energy
Harrisburg, PA – The Solar Foundation today released its annual National Solar Jobs Census, showing that Pennsylvania’s solar industry employs 3,848 workers, climbing 26% percent over 2016. Vote Solar urges lawmakers to keep Pennsylvania solar jobs shining with strong state policy that clears the way for more consumers and communities to participate in the state’s growing solar economy.
“The solar industry is a bright spot in Pennsylvania’s economy, creating thousands of local jobs all across the state,” said Pari Kasotia, Mid-Atlantic Director at Vote Solar. “Pennsylvania lawmakers now have the opportunity to continue growing this solar workforce and unlock even more solar benefits in the state with further leadership at the state level. A strong community solar program, for example, would give more Pennsylvania families and businesses the opportunity to go solar and save while supporting more good local jobs.”
Solar is already delivering significant economic benefits across Pennsylvania, but the traditional panels-on-your-roof approach to solar simply doesn’t work for a majority of energy consumers. Families and businesses that rent, those with low credit scores and those with shaded rooftops face barriers to participation. Well-designed community solar programs can connect these consumers with the clean energy they want for the first time. Whether or not they own a suitable rooftop themselves, consumers would be able to subscribe to a local clean energy project and receive credit on their utility bills for their portion of the clean power produced. In16 statesand DC, community solar programs have already enabled thousands of customers to save money on their utility bills by participating in a local solar project.
Pennsylvania’s solar job growth is in contrast with national trends, which decreased year over year largely due to policy uncertainty at the federal level. The Solar Energy Industries Association estimates that President Trump’s newly implemented solar tariffs will cost the economy another 23,000 jobs in the coming years. Kasotia added, “these actions at the Federal level make state leadership from Pennsylvania lawmakers all the more important to keep the state’s new energy economy growing.”
About Vote Solar:
Since 2002, Vote Solar has been working to lower solar costs and expand solar access. A 501(c)3 non-profit organization, Vote Solar advocates for state policies and programs needed to repower our electric grid with clean energy. Learn more at www.votesolar.org