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Sarah Lukins,
Environment Washington

New Data Shows Solar Jobs Growing in Washington State

State Solar Jobs Bill (HB 1048/SB 5499) Would Lead to More Jobs, More Clean Energy
For Immediate Release

Seattle, WA - Solar in Washington State now employs 3,681 people, a 63% increase from 2015, according to new data released today by the Solar Foundation. The data breaks down solar jobs in Washington by county, congressional district and metro area.

The new numbers come from the Solar Foundation’s 2016 solar jobs census, which shows that solar employment increased 71% in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) and 46 % in the Portland-Beaverton-Vancouver, WA-OR MSA from the end last year compared to the end of 2015. In 2016, solar jobs grew in 44 states (including Washington); solar now employs over 260,000 people nationwide.

The growth in solar jobs reflects the growth of solar itself. In 2016, solar was the number one new source of energy capacity installed in the United States. As solar grows, it has also reduced climate-warming emissions and helped to combat air pollution in Washington.

Bruce Speight from Environment Washington released the following statement:

“Lately, Americans have had a hard time agreeing on some important issues facing our country. But I think we can all agree that solar energy is good for our economy, good for our environment and good for our local communities.

“As the numbers released today show, solar continues to grow rapidly throughout Washington, providing good local jobs for Washingtonians that also help to protect the environment.

“Every solar job we add in Washington means we will continue to reduce carbon emissions, improve air quality and protect public health -- all while putting people to work in their communities.

“Who doesn’t want more of a good thing? State leaders, by passing the Solar Jobs Bill (HB 1048/SB 5499) and extending the solar production incentives, have the opportunity boost an industry that is creating local jobs and providing more clean energy in Washington.

“Ultimately we know we can and must repower our lives using 100 percent renewable energy in Washington and across the country. We encourage leaders in all sectors to help solar continue to grow and meet this challenge. In doing so, Washingtonians will continue to benefit.”

Bonnie Frye Hemphill, campaign director, Keep WA Solar Strong added:

"We're proud to say that solar is already supporting thousands of jobs in Washington, doing our part for climate action. Our solar program has been enormously successful, but now it's at capacity, and those jobs are in danger of going away. Right now, legislators have the opportunity to update Washington's solar program with the Solar Jobs Bill, creating thousands more solar jobs and allowing more home- and business-owners across our state have the chance to own their power."

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Environment Washington is a state-wide, citizen-based, environmental advocacy organization working for clean air, clean water and open space.  www.EnvironmentWashington.org.  

Keep WA Solar Strong campaign is a coalition of solar employees, homeowners, businesses, utilities, environmental groups, faith groups, labor, and credit unions who support the Solar Jobs Bill.  www.solarstrongwa.org. 

New Data Shows Solar
Jobs Growing in Washington State

State Solar
Jobs Bill (HB 1048/SB 5499) Would Lead to More Jobs, More Clean Energy

 

Seattle, WA - Solar in Washington State now employs 3,681
people, a 63% increase from 2015, according to new data released today by the
Solar Foundation. The data breaks down solar jobs in Washington by
county, congressional district and metro area.

 

The new numbers come from the Solar Foundation’s 2016 solar
jobs census, which shows that solar employment increased 71% in the
Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) and 46 % in the
Portland-Beaverton-Vancouver, WA-OR MSA from the end last year compared to the
end of 2015. In 2016, solar jobs grew in 44 states (including Washington);
solar now employs over 260,000 people nationwide.

 

The growth in solar jobs reflects the growth of solar itself.
In 2016, solar was the number one new source of energy capacity installed in
the United States. As solar grows, it has also reduced climate-warming
emissions and helped to combat air pollution in Washington.

 

Bruce Speight from Environment Washington released the
following statement:

 

“Lately, Americans have had a hard time agreeing on some
important issues facing our country. But I think we can all agree that solar
energy is good for our economy, good for our environment and good for our local
communities.

 

“As the numbers released today show, solar continues to grow
rapidly throughout Washington, providing good local jobs for Washingtonians
that also help to protect the environment.

 

“Every solar job we add in Washington means we will continue
to reduce carbon emissions, improve air quality and protect public health --
all while putting people to work in their communities.

 

“Who doesn’t want more of a
good thing? State leaders, by passing the Solar
Jobs Bill (HB 1048/SB 5499) and extending the solar production
incentives, have the opportunity boost an industry that is creating local jobs
and providing more clean energy in Washington.

 

“Ultimately we know we can and must repower our lives using
100 percent renewable energy in Washington and
across the country. We encourage leaders in all sectors to help solar continue
to grow and meet this challenge. In doing so, Washingtonians will continue to
benefit.”

 

Bonnie Frye Hemphill, campaign director,
Keep WA Solar Strong added:

 

"We're
proud to say that solar is already supporting thousands of jobs in Washington,
doing our part for climate action. Our solar program has been enormously
successful, but now it's at capacity, and those jobs are in danger of going
away. Right now, legislators have the opportunity to update Washington's solar
program with the Solar Jobs Bill, creating
thousands more solar jobs and allowing more home- and business-owners across our state have
the chance to own their power."

 

###

 

Environment Washington is a state-wide, citizen-based, environmental
advocacy organization working for clean air, clean water and open space.  www.EnvironmentWashington.org

 

Keep WA Solar Strong
campaign is a coalition of solar employees, homeowners, businesses, utilities,
environmental groups, faith groups, labor, and credit unions who support the
Solar Jobs Bill.  www.solarstrongwa.org.