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Renewable energy is creating US jobs twice as fast as any other industry

Solar panel installers at work
Mario Anzuoni/AP
So many jobs.
  • Karen Hao
By Karen Hao

Junior Data Scientist & Contributor

Published Last updated This article is more than 2 years old.

Even as some people would like to see a rebirth of the coal industry in the US, it’s renewable energy that keeps generating good news.

Over the next decade, jobs for solar panel installers and wind turbine technicians will grow twice as fast as any other occupation, according to a Bloomberg analysis of the US Bureau of Labor Statistics’s biennial employment projections released yesterday.

The main driver of job growth has been the rapid increase in solar capacity. In the last decade, US solar capacity has grown an average of 72% per year.

This has created opportunities in the manufacturing, sales, and installation of solar panels. In 2016, the solar industry employed more than 260,000 Americans.

As Quartz previously reported, the US government has a knack for spectacularly underestimating renewable energy growth. That means the projected figures for installed capacity and job growth are likely much more conservative than the reality to come.

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