Renewable energy sources (solar, wind, and hydropower) were the highest generators of new U.S. electrical capacity during the first three quarters of 2020, according to data released by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). This research also projects that renewable energy will account for approximately 27 percent of the country’s total available installed generating capacity by 2023.
Consistent with this data, the real estate industry has seen an increased interest in renewable energy sources, including solar power, for ground-up commercial and industrial construction. We’re also witnessing a movement toward industrial facility retrofits with the goal of achieving zero net energy (ZNE).
In response to this growing demand for renewable energy construction, SitePro Solutions has expanded its staffing services into solar construction. While we focus on construction staffing for ground-up, utility-scale solar farm projects, we also staff major solar installations for local commercial purposes.
Solar Construction Positions to Fill
SitePro is seeking to fill numerous solar construction jobs to meet our solar clients’ needs. While some positions require solar construction expertise, there are some crossover positions available that don’t necessarily require previous solar work.
Some more specialized positions would include solar panel installers and solar electricians to assemble, install and maintain solar panel systems. We’re also seeking experienced module glass installers to mount the double-glass modules that surround the solar panels themselves.
These technicians should be familiar with solar installations including fixed-mount ground and rooftop structures, as well as tilt-mount panels with single- and dual-axis tracking systems. They should also be mechanically-minded, and capable of doing physical work in an outdoor setting.
We’re also in need of forklift and skid steer operators, as well as mechanical personnel, who would be tasked with performing preventative maintenance, repairs, and inspections on heavy equipment used to build the solar facilities.
SitePro has ample management opportunities for solar construction project managers and superintendents. PMs are needed to plan, coordinate, budget, and supervise construction projects from start to finish. Superintendents would oversee solar construction job sites by managing contractors, performing quality assurance and controls, and serving as a liaison to the PM during construction.
Solar Opportunities in the Southwest
The southwestern states are prime locations for solar farm development. Phoenix, for instance, averages about 300 sunny days per year. Yuma, located near Arizona’s border with California and Mexico, is the sunniest city in the state with more than 320 sunny days annually. Southern California, Nevada, and New Mexico are also home to some of the sunniest regions in the country.
Because of this seemingly endless sunshine, it’s clear renewable energy is becoming a stronger focus in the region. States across the Southwest have recently adopted clean energy plans that regulate utility companies and require them to work toward carbon-free goals. Just last month, the Arizona Corporation Commission passed a proposal requiring utilities to be completely free of carbon emissions by 2050.
Two substantial solar farms have launched operations in Arizona during the past decade. Once the world’s largest parabolic trough plant in the world, Solana Generating Station is a utility-scale solar power plant near Gila Bend, Ariz. The massive facility collects 280 MW of solar power and covers 3 square miles. Further east in Willcox, Ariz., the Apache Generating Station contains 77,000 individual solar panels that provide 20 MW of clean power to rural electric cooperatives across the state.
A Bright Future in Solar Construction
A career in solar construction is sure to offer growing employment opportunities and job security for decades to come. If you’re an experienced solar construction professional, or would like to apply your existing construction skills in the solar industry, SitePro Solutions can help you take the next step in your career.
To see what solar construction opportunities are currently available to you, call 602-633-0420 or visit our job board to to browse current openings.