The Solar Foundation has released a report that states solar jobs outpaced the rest of the economy by a factor of 5.74 in the 12-month period ending September.
Overall, the solar industry expanded by 13.2 percent, adding 13,872 new workers to reach 119,016 employees in that period. In contrast, the rest of the economy had an overall employment growth rate of about 2.3 percent.
“The solar industry has grown at significantly higher rates than most other industries,” Andrea Luecke, the foundation’s executive director, said in the statement.
Crashing solar component prices contributed largely to expanding jobs in the sector; in the year ending October 15, component prices have dropped by nearly 29 percent.
Moreover, federal and state incentives for increased investment in renewables—particularly solar—helped the industry grow. For example, Sunrun Inc., Sungevity Inc., and SolarCity Corp., companies that finance customer installations based on third-party ownership, have all benefited greatly from decreasing equipment costs.