Solar has had quite the past couple years as the number of solar jobs has doubled in the past five years. There are more people working in this industry then there is in the oil and gas industry. In 2015 alone over 35,000 jobs were created in 2015 and that is up more than 20%. This information has come from research done by Solar Foundation, a non-profit group.
In 2015 alone over 17,00 jobs were cut in the oil industry as those commodities continue to spiral downwards. The price per barrel has been trending at around $30 and there is the threat that this could get even lower. It is at an all 12-year low. Comparable to solar energy employees, which totals at 209,000.
Solar Industry Compared to Others
Americans are slowly beginning to see their wages picking up in growth. In comparison solar workers are getting quite large pick up in their checks. On average solar installers make $21 an hour. This is double the national average for workers. Clearly the money is in renewables right now both for companies and the workers involved.
Todd Valdez who owns the company Sunkey Energy designs and installs solar panels. He pays the majority of his employees between $22 and $25 an hour. Electricians are paid upwards to $30 an hour. He has stated that his installations have more than tripled between 2014 and 2015.
This is part of an overarching trend that is becoming prominent across many solar companies. Valdez said that
“Our workload has definitely been rising tremendously,” “a good place to go now if you’re looking for a career change. Solar jobs, particularly installers who work on roofs are not for everyone. It’s lots of outdoor work, with heavy equipment. He’s seen people quit “in hour one.”
Basically it isn’t easy work but the benefits are tremendous. People are leaving from other industries to get involved with solar and if they can take the work then they can make some very decent money.
Experts have said that solar technology has gotten to a point where the panels do not need to have direct exposure to the sun to create electricity. Aside from the increased technology there is also a few other developments being seen in the solar surge.
Many businesses and people who own homes are eligible for 30% tax credits. This tax credit law has been around for a while and just been renewed for an additional six years.
There are a few barriers that the solar energy will have to contend with. Right now oil and gas is becoming quite inexpensive to a lot of consumers. So instead of opting for the alternatives that used to be cheaper they are sticking with non-renewables. Luckily the solar equipment has gone down in price. Clean energy is not going anywhere soon and they will just have to compete at a higher level to make sure the momentum continues and is economically feasible for consumers and producers.