US: SEIA forecasts 25-50% solar market growth in 2016


In a new video report, the U.S. Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) tracks solar’s "huge" growth rate in the U.S. over the past decade. From just 500 MW of installed capacity in 2004, the country has worked hard, often against the odds, to pave a secure path for solar deployment. The results saw cumulative capacity top 20 GW in 2014, while investment rose from US$2.6 billion to $71.1 billion in the same period. By the end of 2016, installed capacity is expected to reach 40 GW.

Having been identified as one of the U.S.’s fastest growing industries, one of solar’s biggest successes has been in the employment sector. Adding 31,000 new jobs in 2014 alone, the number of people employed in solar in the U.S. has increased from 20,000 in 2004, to 174,000 last year. Over four years, the job sector has seen 86% growth, says SEIA, with solar "adding workers at a rate nearly 20 times faster than the overall economy."

Installed capacity, as aforementioned, has also grown exponentially. In 2004, just 15,500 homes had installed PV systems. By 2014, this figure had increased to 600,000. And just two states had an installed solar capacity over 10 MW in 2004. This figure has grown to 35 in 2014, with 20 boasting an installed capacity of over 100 MW.

According to the U.S. Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA), California is by far the most solar active state with 8.65 GW of installed power, followed by Arizona with 1.22 GW and New Jersey, also with 1.22 GW. In its latest Utility Solar Market Snapshot, it states that Solar energy is fast becoming a ‘least-cost' option for U.S. utilities.

Like SEPA, SEIA contributes the solar uptake to "smart policies", including the solar investment tax credit, net metering and Renewable Portfolio Standards laws. On the back of these, the solar industry is said to contribute $18 billion a year to the overall U.S. economy.

By the end of 2016, SEIA estimates that 40 GW of solar will be installed across the states, with 16 installing more than 100 MW. Meanwhile, it forecasts all solar sectors will experience market growth between 25 and 50%. This will help to offset up to 40 million metric tonnes of carbon, also in 2016, it says.

Watch SEIA’s full video report, Solar Energy in the United States: A Decade of Record Growth.

Popular content

This content is protected by copyright and may not be reused. If you want to cooperate with us and would like to reuse some of our content, please contact:


Related content

Elsewhere on pv magazine...

Leave a Reply

Please be mindful of our community standards.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

By submitting this form you agree to pv magazine using your data for the purposes of publishing your comment.

Your personal data will only be disclosed or otherwise transmitted to third parties for the purposes of spam filtering or if this is necessary for technical maintenance of the website. Any other transfer to third parties will not take place unless this is justified on the basis of applicable data protection regulations or if pv magazine is legally obliged to do so.

You may revoke this consent at any time with effect for the future, in which case your personal data will be deleted immediately. Otherwise, your data will be deleted if pv magazine has processed your request or the purpose of data storage is fulfilled.

Further information on data privacy can be found in our Data Protection Policy.