Saturday, November 12, 2016

President Trump: What About Renewables? 209,000 are employed in solar!

Mr. Trump you are now the President Elect of my country that I love. Congratulations! Every generation of my family including myself have served in the military during war and peace. Many have lived out their lives with wounds received while defending this land we love. We have always been strongly independent and I think that was where I caught the bug for renewables as I saw an opportunity for citizens to have the choice to choose where and how they get their power without owing anyone. Solar and wind were really started here in the US but have struggled as we have had access to cheap subsidized fossil fuel for many years.

We have come a long ways and now employ a lot of folks. There are about 209,000 solar energy employees in the U.S. and American wind power supported a record 88,000 jobs in 2016. Compare this with coal of about 100,000. There has been $billions invested in solar and wind here in the US with much more under development. I am personally working on a solar manufacturing facilities that will employ over 200 more Americans. I do agree with you that we need to bring manufacturing jobs home. The majority of solar panels in the US are made from Chinese manufacturers. Let’s change that! There are already several US solar manufacturers but there should and will be more!
I have owned renewable companies for over 25 years and have watched the transition to a renewable portfolio in awe and wonder. I never thought I would see the day that we were selling solar to the average homeowner at the amount we do today. In the beginning of my career it was pot farmers and folks looking to be off grid. It was a hard business model as most did not want to be used for advertisement. I ended up moving to Latin America putting in off grid for ex patriots and small resorts for 16 years. When California started offering incentives for solar I came back home. It was during the Bush administration that the current federal incentives were implemented. They have been key in the growth of the solar and wind industry. I would like to remind you that fossil fuel is much more subsidized with incentives.

I did not start out in this industry as a climate change activist. It just so happens that we do not have emissions and the environmentalist seem to like that. Trust me when I say those same environmentalist have protested some of my solar and wind farms.

You have stated that you are for investment in infrastructure. Our current electrical infrastructure is outdated, vulnerable to hacking and cannot handle growth. Instead of spending money protecting overseas fossil fuel let’s do the American thing and grow our own local energy. I am not against fossil fuel per say as it is what this nation built its financials on but we have proven that solar and wind offer energy independents to the average citizen. That is as American as it gets. That is what makes America great. You have a hugely bigly job ahead of you and I pray you use wisdom, thoughtfulness, and consideration for all sectors of the US economy which includes this fast growing renewable energy sector that employs so many Americans.