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This Simple Graphic Shows How Many More Jobs Solar Power Creates Than Coal

by Penn Collins

April 27, 2017

In recent weeks, Donald Trump has spoken on several occasions about his desire to revive the coal industry for the sake of preserving and creating jobs. But 2016 data shows shifting focus away from sustainable energy sources back to fossil fuels may preserve the jobs of those in the coal industry, the net effect will ultimately cost America hundreds of thousands of new jobs per year. 

This graphic from The New York Times breaks down last year’s job creation data (provided by the Department of Energy) by type and by fossil fuels and sustainable sources in the aggregate. 

The New York Times

The simple math shows that, while solar power continues to lag behind petroleum and natural gas in job creation, the emergent sector already creates more than twice as many jobs nationally than coal does. Without extraordinary intervention by the Trump administration, that gap will continue to widen due to the increasing adoption of solar technology and a continuing decrease in coal jobs since 2012. 

Even when one ignores the environmental impacts of coal vs. solar power, which Donald Trump has shown no difficulty in doing, solar remains the more promising choice for job creation—both today and in the foreseeable future. 

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This Simple Graphic Shows How Many More Jobs Solar Power Creates Than Coal