Trump's long-threatened promise to exit the Paris agreement should not come as a surprise as it was a frequent subject of his rallies.
The good news is that the US and global solar industry are demonstrating that solar is a robust and rapidly growing industry with strong interest and support, not just from home owners, but both small and large businesses, all of whom recognize the vast and varied benefits of supporting clean energy development. Solar employment expanded last year 17 times faster than the total US economy and now employees 260,000 people (up 24% from 2015) and exceeds employment in coal. And for those who are fans, jobs in the wind industry grew by 28% in 2016. Clean energy has overtaken fossil fuels as the cost effective energy solution!
According the Solar Energy Industry Association, over 14.8 GW of PV solar was installed in 2016. The over 42 GW of total solar capacity now installed is enough electricity to power 8.3 million homes! Recent studies show that solar ownership is split fairly equally between political parties, indicating that the technology speaks for itself and does not favor any single political ideology. Factor in the reality that pricing has dropped by 67% since 2011, solar just makes good business sense and will prevail on economics alone.
Where the Federal Government's decision fails to protect our planet, we are heartened to see others stepping in and joining the clean energy crusade. Businesses such as Tesla and ExxonMobil's shareholders have committed to the ongoing advancement of the clean energy economy. States such as New York, Washington, and California have pledged to uphold the Paris Agreement standards, and others, like our home state of Illinois, are spurring clean energy growth through the passage of ground breaking clean energy
legislation. Cities across our nation are increasing their commitments to renewable energy.
We at ISEA rededicate ourselves to ensuring a clean energy future for all.