The Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) released a roadmap Thursday outlining near- and long-term steps to scale America’s solar manufacturing sector.
A response to the passage of the Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act (SEMA), part of the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA), the whitepaper, Catalyzing American Solar Manufacturing, lays out how the solar and storage industry can capitalize on the policy support and build a manufacturing base that is cost-competitive while ensuring sufficient demand and supporting a strong, diverse workforce.
“For the first time, the United States has industrial policy in place that will usher in a new era of clean energy manufacturing,” said SEIA president and CEO Abigail Ross Hopper. “This roadmap is a blueprint for strategically growing America’s clean energy supply chain and supporting the companies that have committed to U.S. production once the reconciliation package becomes law. If we follow the recommendations in the paper, we can grow the U.S. solar manufacturing workforce and put the solar and storage industry on a path to secure, sustainable and equitable growth for decades to come.”
Once SEMA is in place, SEIA’s roadmap recommends that manufacturers consider the demand for their products and focus their attention on downstream production first, including expanding domestic module manufacturing to ensure demand for domestic cells, ingots, and wafers once these products become available. The paper also suggested domestic manufacturing can grow in the near term as the IRA scales up demand for solar and storage products.
The report also provided a snapshot of the current market landscape.