In 2013, we reported that a solar installation was being completed every four minutes in America. Installation volumes have increased considerably since then.
According to new data from GTM Research, the U.S. solar industry completed a project every two and a half minutes in 2014. Those installations were a result of $15 billion in investment.
The growth was led by the residential sector, where 200,000 systems were affixed to rooftops around the country. That’s up from 50,000 residential systems in 2011 — fourfold growth in the span of three years.
"Residential solar is the fastest-growing — and potentially the most transformative — sector of the solar market," said Shayle Kann, senior VP of GTM Research.
President Obama mentioned GTM Research’s statistic in his State of the Union address last year.
"It’s not just oil and natural gas production that’s booming; we’re becoming a global leader in solar, too. Every four minutes, another American home or business goes solar; every panel [is] pounded into place by a worker whose job can’t be outsourced," said the president.
By the time President Obama mentioned the number, it had already fallen to a system being installed every three and a half minutes.
At the current pace, the U.S. will likely hit 900,000 cumulative installations across all sectors this year, and well over 1 million in 2016.
Ten years ago, a system was going up every two hours on average. By next year, the American solar industry could be completing an installation nearly every minute.