Those numbers come from a Department of Energy report published in January by the Obama administration that provides the most complete picture available of American energy employment.
In 2016, 1.9 million Americans were employed in electric power generation, mining and other fuel extraction activities, according to the report – a field we’ll call power creation for short.
More than 373,000 Americans worked part or full time in solar energy, and just over 260,000 of them – or about 70 percent – spent a majority of their time on solar projects.
Most solar energy jobs were in installation, construction and manufacturing, as the relatively new industry continued to add capacity. Solar power still generated a small share of United States energy output last year.
The coal industry, which has shed jobs since 2012, primarily due to competition from cheap natural gas, employed just over 160,000 workers nationwide. About 54,000 coal jobs were in mining.
It’s important to note that power creation isn’t the only source of energy employment. The Energy Department report found another 2.3 million jobs in energy transmission, storage and distribution, a number that includes powerline and pipeline workers and more than 900,000 retail jobs, such as gas station workers and fuel dealers. If non-traditional energy workers are included in the mix – those involved in manufacturing and installing energy-efficient products – the total number of energy-related jobs swells to 6.4 million.
read more at: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2017/04/25/climate/todays-energy-jobs-are-in-solar-not-coal.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=photo-spot-region®ion=top-news&WT.nav=top-news
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