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Why You Should Be As Excited About Solar As We Are

why we are excited about solar energyAs you may know from our recent posts (this one and this one, for instance), EcoOutfitters is delighted to be  at Solar Power International convention in Dallas, TX this week. As co-founder and president, I’m excited to be part of an industry that is not only growing but is impacting our world.

Thanks to the Solar Foundation’s 2011 National Solar Jobs Census
and SEIA President and CEO Rhone Reich, who spoke at SPI 2011 today, we’ve compiled a number of facts that deserve to be spotlighted. And, since we’re all about bright things here at EcoOutfitters, here you go:

  • The 4th annual SCHOTT Solar Barometer shows that nine out of 10 Americans feel we should develop and use more solar in this country.
  • Last year solar water heating grew by 5 percent and solar pool heating grew by 13 percent. Combined, they installed over 66,000 systems with the equivalent of 814 megawatts thermal.
  • A study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory earlier this year confirmed that adding solar to your home increases its value by up to $6.40 per watt.
  • As of August 2011, the National Solar Jobs Census 2011 identified more than 17,198 solar employment sites and 100,237 solar jobs in all 50 states. The solar industry’s job growth rate of 6.8 percent is significantly higher than the 2 percent net job loss in fossil fuel power generation and the economy-wide expectation of 0.7 percent growth over the same period.
  • The National Solar Jobs Census 2011 also found that solar employers expect to increase the number of solar workers by 24 percent, representing nearly 24,000 net new jobs by August 2012. Over the next 12 months, nearly half of solar firms expect to add jobs.
  • At the state level, California continued to be the national leader in solar employment, with 25,575 workers. Rounding out the top 10 states are Colorado, Arizona, Pennsylvania, New York, Florida, Texas, Oregon, New Jersey and Massachusetts. Colorado, Arizona, Florida, Oregon, New Jersey and Massachusetts showed the strongest growth rates from August 2010.
  • The solar  industry is made up of more than 5,000 American companies … most of them small businesses.
  • Even in the toughest economic times, the solar industry is creating jobs seven times faster than the rest of America.
  • Extension of the 1603 Treasury Program by even just one more year will support 37,000 additional jobs and deploy 2,000 additional megawatts of solar capacity. Find out how you can support this effort.

Stay tuned for more reporting direct from SPI 2011 here and on Twitter and Facebook.

Post Written by
For Raina Brett Russo, taking care of the environment is a necessity, not an option. Having grown up in Israel, a place where conservation is required and solar hot water heating is the norm, Raina knows the importance of solar energy. Through her work with the EcoOutfitters.net team, Raina found a way to help grow the solar industry in a significant way. As the founder and host of #SolarChat, a bi-monthly "gathering" on Twitter, Raina and her team have created an engaged solar think-tank community that comes together regularly for collaboration and networking with the ultimate goal in mind of spreading the solar message.

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