California had an energy crisis last week, and they’re not out of the woods (not to mention the awful wildfires that continue to burn). Residents on a stressed power grid can do what electric vehicle drivers already know: Energy consumption during off-peak hours saves money. It also reduces strain on the grid, which can help prevent rolling blackouts.Expand Expanding Close
Solar Power now has more employees than either the Oil & Gas or Coal Extraction industries in the United States. The solar industry employed approximately 208,000 individuals at the end of 2015 versus 185,000+ in oil and gas, or 190,000 in coal extraction. Solar power employment is expected to grow an additional 15% in 2016 to almost 240,000 individuals. Globally, solar power now directly employs 2.8 million people as the largest renewable energy employer.
SolarCity is the largest installer of residential solar so looking at their market performance is a useful indicator for the solar industry as a whole. This week, the company released their financial results for the second quarter of the year (April to June) and they achieved record bookings and installations.
Even though the company missed Wall Street’s expectations, they impressed the industry with 189 MW of solar power installed in just 3 months. I’m not overstating anything when I say this is impressive. For comparison, SolarCity installed more distributed solar power on rooftops than the capacity of a large solar power farm like the Centinela Solar Energy Project in California.