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7:14 am
Mon February 24, 2014

Solar Industry Grows In Wyoming

The number of jobs in Wyoming related to solar energy has increased by almost 600 percent in just over a year. That's according to a report from the Solar Foundation. The report shows that out of 340 solar-related jobs in the state, 290 of them were added since 2012.

Credit publicdomainpictures.net

Ten solar energy companies are operating in the state. But Bruce Parkinson with UW's School of Energy Resources says many of the installed systems are privately owned and off the grid.

"In the rural areas it's often really expensive to run electrical lines to very isolated locations so there it really makes sense to set up a solar energy system to generate your power," Parkinson said.

Wyoming ranks 12th in the nation for its potential to produce solar power, but 45thfor the amount of solar energy it produces.

Parkinson says a lack of local financial incentives, and Wyoming's small population, are factors that limit solar power development in the state.

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