Colorado’s solar industry is expecting a boom in business as more than $300 billion is directed toward clean energy as part of the Inflation Reduction Act.
“This is transformative, there’s no doubt about it. It’s a 10-year signal that we’re ready to do something about clean energy in the United States,” said Annie Lappe, Pivot Energy’s Vice President of Policy and Impact.
“Currently, solar energy makes up three percent of the US energy supply. With the incentives in this bill that will lower the cost of solar energy again, we will see the demand for it increase rapidly. Let’s increase solar energy to 30 percent by 2030,” Lappe added.
The money and a long-term tax credit are expected to stabilize renewable energy markets that have been in flux for years with government support.
“The need is now and the need is going to grow. Any business will tell you the certainty of where the market will be in 10 years is amazing. Customers can plan for it; employers can plan for it and employees can plan for it,” said the president of the Colorado Solar and Storage Association. and CEO Mike Kruger.
The solar energy industry employs about 7,000 people in Colorado. This number is expected to double within ten years.
“Thanks to this bill and other factors, we plan to double the capacity next year. We will help train the workforce to meet the demand for this many megawatts of clean energy,” Lappe said.
“It’s not just your traditional boots on the roof or people in the field, we need marketing experts, communications experts, legal experts,” Kruger said.
And in turn, energy prices are expected to fall.
“Xcel Energy will require 4 gigawatts of new renewable energy, all of which would be 30 percent cheaper now than it would have been if this bill hadn’t happened. You should see savings on your electric bill because it adds very cheap solar to your local utility,” Kruger said.