RENO — The U.S. solar energy industry achieved a new record for installations in the third quarter of 2011 thanks to utility-scale projects, a rising residential market and low manufacturing prices, according to a report released by the Solar Energy Industries Association. Grid-connected photovoltaic installations grew 140 percent over last year. The growth of the industry reflects locally with Reno-based Hamilton Solar.
Hamilton Solar reported its most successful year since it’s founding in 2008, having more than doubled its workforce and production. Over the course of 2011, the company grew from 35 employees to more than 60.
“In a time when America has been suffering to put people back to work, the solar industry has grown to employ over a 100,000 people – that’s 20,000 more than the coal industry,” said Reid Hamilton, partner of Hamilton Solar. “Rising energy costs coupled with decreasing solar prices, positions Hamilton Solar to have a fantastic 2012,”