solar-,fastest growing industries in the country
New SEIA/GTM Research Report shows solar still growing in Q1 2011
A new report released today by SEIA and GTM Research shows that solar energy continues to be one of the fastest growing industries in the country. While the overall U.S. economy grew at a sluggish 1.8% during the first three months of 2011, the domestic PV industry grew at 66% compared to the first quarter of 2010. Domestic manufacturing of PV modules grew at 31% compared to 2010. In total, there is now enough solar energy installed in the U.S. to power nearly half a million homes.
Those of us that live, work and breathe in solar energy have always made one promise: give us a stable policy environment that moves solar energy towards a level playing field with fossil fuels and we will aggressively reduce costs and create jobs. The Q1 2011 Solar Market Insight report is the latest indicator that the industry is keeping its promise. Across the country, prices for solar modules are falling and installers are continually working to reduce installation costs and allow every American to realize the benefits of going solar.
According to Shayle Kahn, Managing Director of Solar at GTM Research, “[T]he U.S. is currently the PV industry’s most attractive and stable growth market.” Based on the best projections of GTM Research and others, the solar industry is positioned to nearly double its global market share in 2011. Mr. Kahn expects the U.S. market to “support a greater diversity of installation types than has been previously seen in any leading demand center.”
What does all this mean? That solar in the U.S. is here to stay. With smart policy decisions, we can build diverse markets that will support a robust and competitive ecosystem of solar companies. In fact, we’re already seeing this: the SMI report shows strong growth in all three major PV markets – residential, non-residential and utility-scale. Strong U.S. demand for a variety of solar technologies will lead to further cost reductions and entice more solar companies to build domestic manufacturing facilities. Across the board, the diverse U.S. solar market will create thousands of new jobs in fields from manufacturing and installation to engineering and administration.
As you can see from the SMI report, solar energy is working for America now, and we need your help to spread the message in your community. Please take a moment to share GTM Research’s excellent write-up of our joint release on Facebook or Twitter. With your help, we’ll keep working to build a clean, solar-powered future for America.
Thomas P. Kimbis
Vice-President, Strategy & External Affairs
Solar Energy Industries Association