The solar industry has been booming over recent years. Nearly 260,000 people work in the solar industry, which is nearly double the number employed in 2012. The industry is growing at an impressive rate, and with this growth, the construction industry also grows. As the solar industry grew, it opened the door for the construction industry to enter a new market.
The installation of solar panels is starting to become cheaper as the price of each panel declines. As more people want solar panels, there is more installation work that needs to be done. Here steps in construction contractors who could specialize in solar. The increase in demand for solar energy allows for construction companies to enter a completely new market. By 2024 the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predicts that the construction industry will add nearly 800,000 jobs. Not surprisingly, this growth parallels the massive growth of the solar industry that is projected over the next 10 years. Solar allows for more diverse job opportunities for construction workers, electricians, roofers, and companies.
The Solar Boom
The good thing about solar for construction companies is that solar panels are applicable almost anywhere. If the panels are revealed to the sun with little to no obstruction from trees, solar can be built there. This includes homes, schools, hospitals, offices and many more options. The potential for solar is nearly endless, and this opens up many more avenues for construction jobs and potential work. For instance, the Three Dominion Virginia Solar Power Facilities plan to build three separate large solar facilities in Virginia, and the entire building process will generate around 800 new construction jobs in the region as a result.
Conversely, the boom in solar construction is very beneficial for the solar industry itself. With more construction companies gaining experience and specializing in solar construction, the high demand for solar can now be supplied by the increasing number of solar construction companies. With Massachusetts, California, and many other states lighting the way for solar energy, as Massachusetts and California employ a combined 114,600 solar workers, more people and companies will be turning to solar energy. Solar energy is as popular as ever, and the high demand for panels means that there will be more job opportunities for construction companies who install the panels.
According to the United States Department of Energy, the U.S. building sector is responsible for about 40% of the country’s primary energy consumption. Sustainable building and green building can offset the huge energy usage that goes into construction. As we demand more energy to expand our economy, the demand for solar and renewable energy skyrockets. As a result, more renewable jobs as well as construction jobs are created.
One possible way to reduce the massive energy consumption from the construction industry is to incorporate green building techniques into the construction processes themselves. Using renewable energy in construction allows for companies to use fewer non-renewables (fossil fuels), which are harmful contributors to climate change. Using solar energy as a fuel source to run construction machinery and tools can reduce the money companies need to spend on fuels like gasoline and oil.
The future looks bright for the solar and construction industries. Although our current political administration does not often view renewable energy as a viable source of energy, private solar companies are pushing the agenda on solar and renewables. These companies are one of the factors driving the solar industry. As they continue to push the solar industry further, they recruit and partner with construction companies to implement the solar systems, creating more job opportunities for construction companies in the solar field. This relationship benefits both parties and will continue to, as renewables become more and more popular.