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Solar PicArguably the hottest industry in the country, the rise of solar energy has been nothing short of remarkable. Just 4 years ago, the U.S. added only 329 megawatts of solar – at that time, a record.1
Business Council for Sustainable Energy, February 2015
Compare that to the last two years, when U.S. solar grew by 6,596 megawatts, and it’s clear that the industry has reached an inflection point.2
Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, January 2015

The key driver of this growth has been the Investment Tax Credit (ITC), a federal tax incentive that anyone who invests in a solar installation can claim. Many states also allow residential and commercial solar owners to sell unused solar they generate to utilities. This policy is called net-metering.

The rapid growth of the solar industry has had a noticeable effect on the U.S. economy. Solar currently supports 173,807 direct jobs.3
The Solar Foundation, January 2015
That number will rise above 200,000 jobs by the end of this year. There are already more solar workers in the U.S. than coal miners.4
Politifact, July 2014

There are two primary means of generating solar energy: traditional photovoltaic (PV) panels as well as concentrated solar power (CSP). Concentrated solar power uses large mirrors to concentrate a significant amount of sunlight onto a small area. This generates heat which is then converted into electricity, usually through the use of steam turbines. Some of these projects are able to store energy and deploy it during the night ,5
Ivanpah Solar
but uncertainty surrounding the future of the Investment Tax Credit has stifled further CSP growth.6
Bloomberg BNA, October 2014

  Aug 06, 2015  |    Sydney Morning Herald, August 2015

  Jul 22, 2015  |    Bloomberg, July 2015

  Jul 10, 2015  |    Bloomberg, July 2015

  May 28, 2015  |    Bloomberg, May 2015

  May 20, 2015  |    International Renewable Energy Agency

  Apr 24, 2015  |    Washington Post, February 2013

  Apr 21, 2015  |    SEIA, May 2013

  Sep 02, 2014  |    Washington Examiner

  Aug 06, 2014  |    Environment Pennsylvania

  Jul 30, 2014  |    Christian Science Monitor

  Jul 28, 2014  |    Lux Research

  Jul 16, 2014  |    Interstate Renewable Energy Council

  Jul 09, 2014  |    ACORE

  Jul 02, 2014  |    Indianapolis Star

  May 30, 2014  |    Bloomberg

  Apr 02, 2014  |    Gallup


Solar Power Stats

  Jan 28, 2015

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