Last week, I had the pleasure of attending Solar Power International, an annual conference sponsored by SEIA and SEPA, which featured major speakers such as President Bill Clinton as well as leaders from every business sector, technical presentations from universities and renewable energy laboratories that highlighted solar technology and applications from around the country.
As quoted by the Huffington Post, President Clinton stated at SPI that he feels strongly about this industry sector.
"We've got to get the basic facts out there first, about our capacity to produce this energy, about current job creation and about future job prospects too," said President Clinton.
In synch with President Clinton and based on the latest data, we also believe that solar energy is solidly positioned to become a mainstream energy source. A recently published report, U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2nd Quarter 2012, finds that U.S. solar achieved its second-best quarter in history, having installed 742 megawatts of solar power, with the best quarter on record for the utility-scale solar market segment.
Below are five key takeaways from Solar Power International and the U.S. Solar Market Insight: 2nd Quarter 2012, issued by GTM Research and SEIA:
- Utility-Scale installations hit 477 megawatts in the second quarter.
- In total, the U.S. now has 5,700 megawatts of installed solar capacity, enough to power more than 940,000 households.
- With 3,400 megawatts of utility photovoltaic (PV) projects currently under construction, GTM Research forecasts an additional 1.1 gigawatts of utility-scale PV to begin operating before year’s end.
- The report forecasts that in 2012 a total of 3,200 megawatts, or 3.2 gigawatts, of PV will be installed in the U.S.—up 71 percent over 2011.
- Today, the U.S. solar industry employs more than 100,000 Americans at 5,600, mostly small businesses, across all 50 states.
This data makes it clear that solar is one of the fastest growing segments in the renewable energy sector. As solar energy moves into the mainstream, JMC Steel Group is committed to leading the way with a wide range of high-quality, customizable products for the solar construction industry.