NEWS: Solar jobs growth hot in Utah, more than twice national average

Deseret News
Amy Joi O’Donoghue
Published: February 7, 2017

 

SALT LAKE CITY — A new report shows Utah’s solar industry was sizzling hot last year, adding jobs at more than twice the national rate — growing 65 percent from 2015 to 2016.

Nationwide, 1 in every 50 jobs created last year came from the solar industry and represented 2 percent of the new jobs added, the census report from the Solar Foundation found. The census showed that 260,077 people work in the solar industry nationwide, up 24.5 percent in a year’s time.

In 2015, Utah had 2,679 solar-related jobs. That grew to 4,408 the next year, propelling Utah to No. 14 in the country for solar jobs. It ranks seventh in solar jobs per capita.

Matt Pacenza, executive director of the advocacy organization HEAL Utah, said the solar industry plays a key role in the state’s economy.

“Our amazing growth in rooftop solar is not just helping Utah’s families do their part for clean air and clean energy, but it’s becoming a major economic driver,” he said. “It goes to show that economic growth and environmental well-being can go hand in hand.”

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