Solar Jobs Growth in Utah, More Than Twice National Average

SALT LAKE CITY – The state of Utah showed an unprecedented employment growth in the solar energy sector last year. The job market saw a 65% rise, which is double the national average.

The executive director of HEAL Utah, Matt Pacenza, points out that a focus on clean energy can also foster economic growth.

But while the state enjoys its rank as the 7th in solar employment opportunities per capita nationwide, Rep. Jeremy Peterson, R-Ogden, prepares to introduce a bill that directly raises the cost of rooftop solar installations for its citizens.

Utility companies like Rocky Mountain Power are losing revenue as more customers shift to the cleaner, cheaper alternative of solar energy.

Peterson also argues that the current Solar Tax Credit cuts into the general fund used for education in the state. He proposes that the credit be decreased every year by increments of $400 from the next fiscal year.

It is estimated that by 2021, the Tax Credit can be completely repealed as cost of solar rooftop installations becomes more competitive.

With the rising number of solar careers in the state and growing capacity for producing electricity, the solar industry is forcing Utah’s legislators to treat it as a major source of energy and employment.