Buffalo, NY—More than 10,600 megawatts of solar power were installed last year in the United States, and local installer Solar by CIR has been recognized by Solar Power World magazine for its contributions to the industry. Solar by CIR achieved a rank of 174 out of 450 solar companies on the magazine’s 2018 Top Solar Contractors list.
The Top Solar Contractors list is developed by Solar Power World to recognize the work completed by solar contractors across the United States. Produced annually, the Top Solar Contractors list celebrates the achievements of U.S. solar developers, subcontractors and installers within the utility, commercial and residential markets, and ranks contractors by kilowatts installed in the previous year. The 2018 list was released on July 24.
“Solar Power World is very excited about the 2018 class of Top Solar Contractors,” said Kelly Pickerel, editor in chief of Solar Power World. “Our 2017 list showed impressive installation numbers after 2016’s huge rush to meet ITC requirements, and many companies were hesitant to show unavoidable installation dips after last year’s high. We’re happy to feature a strong group of thriving U.S. solar installers on the 2018 Top Solar Contractors list. These companies truly are at the top of their markets.”
The U.S. solar market had its biggest year ever in 2016, installing more than 15,000 MW. Although installations in 2017 dropped to 10,608 MW, the total still represents 40% growth over 2015 numbers. The year-over-year downturn can be attributed to the large influx of 2016 projects rushing to meet the anticipated expiration of a 30% federal tax credit that was eventually renewed. Last year also saw uncertainty surrounding potential Section 201 tariffs on imported solar panels, which may have led to delayed or canceled projects.
A major highlight of 2017 was the non-residential market growing 28% year-over-year, the fourth straight year of annual growth for commercial, industrial and community solar. In 2017, 30% of all new electric generating capacity brought online in the United States came from solar, second only to new natural gas capacity.
The first quarter of 2018 showed a 13% growth over the first quarter of 2017, and Solar by CIR will continue to contribute to the wave of increasing solar generation. By 2023, more than 15,000 MW of solar is expected to be installed annually.
CIR employs over 100 field staff some of whom helped install 3.8 MW capacity of their solar power in 2017. Since the beginning of the solar division in 2011, the company has installed just shy of 18MW of solar. That is the equivalent of offsetting 13.4 metric tons of carbon, or 32,833 miles driven in a passenger car!
Director of Business Development, Ashley Regan says, “This past year was certainly a challenge in the solar industry given the tariffs and regulatory changes, but we are proud yet again of the steady growth CIR has realized in the renewable energy sector given it all. Still coming out better and stronger than ever is a true testament to the hardiness of this industry and the people it employs.”
About Solar Power World
Solar Power World is the leading online and print resource for news and information regarding solar installation, development and technology. Since 2011, SPW has helped U.S. solar contractors—including installers, developers and EPCs in all markets—grow their businesses and do their jobs better.