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Renewable Energy Sector Sheds 600,000 Jobs In Pandemic

The renewable energy industry in the United States has lost close to 600,000 jobs since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic, a report from BW Research Partnership has revealed.

Most of these jobs were lost during April, the research firm said, at 447,200, or triple the number of jobs the industry lost in March. The total job loss so far constitutes as much as 17 percent of total employment in the industry, BW Research said.

Last month, a group of organizations, including BW Research Partnership, warned that more than half a million jobs could be lost in the renewable energy industry because of the crisis. At the time, one of the organizations, E2, said the number of jobs lost in March was equal to the number of new jobs added in the industry last year.

And the pain is not over either, BW Research Partnership warned in its report, with the number of job losses continuing to increase this month and beyond.

“Our previous projection of a half million or 15 percent of all clean energy jobs lost by the end of June has already been surpassed,” BW Research Partnership said. “Based on that analysis, along with forecasts from clean energy trade groups and reports from individual companies, we conservatively project that the clean energy sector will lose about a quarter of its workforce or 850,000 jobs by the end of the second quarter if no actions are taken to support the clean energy industry and its workers.”

According to another survey, from the Solar Energy Industries Association, the solar power industry alone could shed half of its 250,000 jobs over the next few months unless urgent relief measures are put into action.

Back in April, E2 called on Congress to help the industry get through the crisis with as little losses as possible by extending tax incentive application deadlines and by providing temporary refundability for renewable tax credits “that are increasingly difficult to monetize.”

By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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