Coal / Freeze on Clean Energy

Despite solar job growth, company officials say Ohio policy prevented more

Workers install solar panels at a facility in Wayne National Forest in Ohio.
Photo by Wayne National Forest / Creative Commons

WASHINGTON, DC — “Employment in Ohio’s solar industry grew 21 percent last year, with the addition of 1,020 jobs, according to the report. The state’s total of 5,831 jobs ranked Ohio’s solar industry employment 11th overall, but only 25th on a per capita basis.

Company leaders say Ohio could have done much better if its lawmakers had not frozen targets under the state’s renewable portfolio standard at the 2014 level through the end of last year.

‘Without SB 310, our job growth would have been at least double, more likely triple,’ said Alan Frasz at Dovetail Solar and Wind in Cleveland. Before that 2014 law took effect, employment in the industry had grown at much higher rates, he noted.

‘Ohio’s job growth would absolutely have been higher without the freeze,’ agreed Steve Melink of Melink Corp. in Milford. Although Ohio was a “national leader” when the state’s renewable portfolio standard was first adopted in 2008, ‘now we have fallen behind most states and many countries around the world,’ Melink added.”

— Kathiann M Kowalski, Midwest Energy News

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