Addressing Inequality in the Clean Energy Industry
Solar Faithful believes that the clean energy transition can provide an entrance ramp for those who have traditionally been left out of the clean energy industry. Overall, the energy sector’s workforce has a lower percentage of women and people of color than the overall economy of the United States.
Job Training and Economic Opportunities in the Clean Energy Sector
Solar Faithful, as part of its solar development, will include job training for congregants and other members of the community. High quality training for clean energy and construction jobs can bring well-paying jobs and access to a growing industry. These jobs are especially important to the economy, as energy jobs typically pay higher hourly wages compared to the national median ($25.60 per hour, compared to $19.14 nationally).
Aging Workforce and the Need for Workforce Rejuvenation
There is a great need to attract a new generation of construction and clean energy workers. Solar Faithful is entering the industry at a time when the age of construction and trade workers continues to increase, and the workforce itself requires rejuvenation to meet demand. Between 1994 and 2024, the percentage of U.S. workers aged 55 years and older is projected to double, increasing from 11.9 percent to 24.8 percent. Between 2016 and 2026, the average age of the U.S. workforce is expected to increase from 42.0 to 42.3 years—“the highest level ever recorded”. This comes after the average age of construction workers increased from 36 to 42.5 years between 1985 and 2015 and the proportion aged 55 and older increased from 12 percent to more than 20 percent.
Promoting Solar Adoption and Economic Opportunities in Underserved Communities
Solar Faithful aims to increase the adoption of solar arrays in low-income and communities of color as well as all houses of worship in order to increase economic opportunities and participation in the clean energy transition.