Some countries, such as Germany, India, Spain, and the U.S., have emerged as leaders in renewable technologies. Worldwatch Institute reports that they can expect job gains in manufacturing solar panels and wind turbines for both domestic and export markets in the near future.
According to Global Wind Energy Outlook 2006, global wind power employment is projected to grow to as much as 2.1 million in 2030 and 2.8 million in 2050.
A 2007 report, Solar Generation IV, by the European Photovoltaic Industry Association and Greenpeace International, similarly projects worldwide solar photovoltaic employment to expand to as many as 6.3 million jobs by 2030.
Currently a conservative estimate of about 2.3 million people worldwide work either directly in renewables or indirectly in supplier industries. Some 300,000 are employed in the wind power industry and an estimated 170,000 work in the solar photovoltaics sector, with at least 624,000 people working in the solar thermal industry.
The alternative energy industry, solar in particular, has exploded in California, resulting in thousands of new solar panel installation and solar cell production jobs.