WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced $32 million in funding to help train American workers for the solar energy workforce and to further drive down the cost of solar by developing innovative low-cost concentrating solar power collectors and increasing access to critical solar data.

The DOE is making up to $12 million available to develop a diverse, well-trained solar-support workforce, including insurance, real estate, and utility professionals whom consumers rely on when they choose solar. An additional $5 million will fund projects aimed at increasing market transparency and access to key solar energy datasets. An additional $15 million will fund projects to develop new designs for concentrating solar power (CSP) collectors, the most expensive component of CSP systems. Altogether, this funding will help make solar energy more accessible and affordable for American families and businesses.

“Last year, a new solar energy project was installed every two and a half minutes in the U.S.,” said Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, deputy secretary, DOE. “To ensure the continued growth of the U.S. solar industry and our clean energy economy, it’s critical that we support workforce training programs that will give American workers the skills they need for well-paying jobs and also make sure American consumers have access to highly trained, credentialed professionals when they choose solar to power their daily lives.”

Publication date: 6/29/2015 

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