In September Rob Meyers, who manages our energy department, went to the Solar Energy Industries Association Solar Power International Conference in Orlando, FL. Says Rob, “I’ve been to other regional conferences for solar and energy efficiency, but I’ve never been to one of this scale – 20,000 attendees from around the globe. Truly a homecoming for the solar nation – can’t wait for the next time.”
Rob continues, “Among the many highlights was Bill Clinton’s keynote address during which he threw down the gauntlet to all of us. He told us in no uncertain terms that we have not done enough to get the real story of solar to the general population. After recalling the success of the US PV industry – 100,000 new jobs, lower prices, higher efficiency and a growth rate of 8% during a recession – he said ‘The problem is that most Americans who are not in this hall at SPI don’t know that. You can be proud of yourself and get the positive facts out there.’ Some of those facts:
- Over 100,000 Americans are employed in the solar electric industry, in 5,600 small business across all 50 states;
- The number of U.S. solar installations grew 116% from Q2 2011 to Q2 2012 (US Solar Market Insight Report);
- Every kWh produced with PV in New England effectively offsets three kWh produced and distributed by our 30% efficient conventional power supply and grid.