Solar and Storage Companies Add Over $100 BN to US Economy

Since the passing of the 2022 US Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), solar and energy storage companies operating in the United States have reported over $100 billion in private sector investments. This is according to a new reporting by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

The sector is currently seeing a large expansion, with 51 solar manufacturing facilities being announced or expanded this year alone. This increase was commented on by Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of SEIA, “The unprecedented surge in demand for American-made clean energy is a clear sign that the clean energy incentives enacted last year by Congress are working.”

Hopper goes on to add, “This law is a shining example of how good federal policy can help spur innovation and private investment in communities that need it most. We are unleashing abundant clean energy that is creating jobs and capable of delivering affordable, reliable power to every home and business in this country.”

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These newly announced solar factories will invest up to $20 billion in the US economy and will include production of 85 GW of solar module capacity, 43 GW of solar cells, 20 GW of silicon ingots and wafers and 7GW of inverter capacity. Overall, it will amount to an increase of 155 GW of production capacity across the board.

However, this increase is just the beginning. By 2026, the US has predicted its manufacturing capacity across the above projects will increase 17 times over once all of the factories are in operation. This is enough to supply the vast majority of solar projects built within the US.

Mississippi River

The solar industry is looking to be a big player in the US economy. Projections over the next decade show an increase of 500,000 jobs within the industry. US business, Solar Manufacturing, announced it is set to triple in size across the same timeframe, to a workforce of over 100,000 employees.

With regards to profit, the solar industry alone is set to generate $565 billion in private sector investments across the next decade. By 2033, solar capacity will have increased to a huge 669 GW – that is enough to power every home east of the Mississippi River and off-set 459 million metric tonnes of C02 each year.

On top of expansions to solar energy, energy storage will also see an increase. An additional 65GWh of energy storage capacity has been announced across 14 facilities, both new and expanded. Currently, an estimated 100,000 US residents have opted for a residential solar system paired with battery storage, however this is expected to grow respectively over the decade.