Poll of the Day: 9 in 10 Americans Want More Solar, 8 in 10 Support Federal Solar Incentives

For the fourth year in a row, a survey conducted by independent pollster Kelton Research shows that 89% of Americans think it’s important for the U.S. to develop solar.

That’s nothing new. The last three surveys have showed the exact same thing. But this year’s poll comes at a time of severe political backlash against clean energy subsidies after the bankruptcy of solar manufacturer Solyndra.

Even with the rancorous politics around federal investments in clean energy, the poll shows that 82% of Americans think incentives like tax credits are necessary to help build the industry.

Here are some more details.


The poll was conducted on behalf of SCHOTT Solar and the Solar Energy Industries Association.

Kelton pollsters also asked respondents which technologies they would preferably allocate federal subsidies to, with 39% choosing solar over a range of other technologies. The next closest was natural gas, with 21% support. Coal only received 3% support.

After months of political wrangling over federal incentives for solar and other clean energy technologies, the solar industry is working overtime to prove its worth — highlighting strong public support, local economic value, and the “ferocious” cost reductions taking place in the sector.

You can find the survey questions and methodology at SEIA’s website. And a poll wouldn’t be complete without the ever-popular infographic.

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8 Responses to Poll of the Day: 9 in 10 Americans Want More Solar, 8 in 10 Support Federal Solar Incentives

  1. Doc Rock says:

    The real tragedy is that when interest in things solar began to heat up thirty odd years ago there was little vision in government, finance, and entrepreneurship to add impetus to the movement, while the forces of entrenched carbon-exploitative industries were arrayed against progress. We could have been a world leader and had many more jobs, cleaner air, water, and environment. Earth Day should be every day, not just once a year.

  2. Leif says:

    Eat your hart out Fossil Industry, your days are numbered.

    My 4 month old, 2.28 kW array, Solar PV has earned my household ~$660 so far this year compared to the earnings in my CD, which, if inflation were factored in, would be less than zero.

    Here comes the sun Wall Street Vampires.

  3. Mark says:

    Free resource for solar hot water heaters….. I said “no” to solar hot water heaters based on estimates for systems qualifying for the federal tax credit. today I stumbled onto this site with many free DIY plans for systems that (allegedly) have almost as high efficiency for a fraction of the post-tax credit cost. (This is not spam because the plans at this site are free)

  4. Dean Loros says:

    No big surprise for me…I’ve had a 3.5KW-hr solar system for 10 years now… $500 to the Power Co. per year…..And it’s my car port to boot…..

    Now MORE people NEED to do the same!!!!!!

  5. Paul Revere says:

    The Economist correctly opposes federal solar incentives, noting that their only advantage is that they don’t take food out of poor people’s mouths the way using corn for ethanol fuel does, a low bar indeed. If you beat the drum for a REVENUE-NEUTRAL carbon tax (using all revenue to cut social security taxes, income taxes, or corporate taxes to keep businesses able to compete), then you’d make much more sense.

  6. John McCormick says:

    Mark, a great link. Thanks.

  7. Paul Revere says:

    Slip in the carbon taxes this way–consider what the AP says:
    “WASHINGTON (AP) — Breaking with party orthodoxy, 40 House Republicans urged Congress’ supercommittee on Wednesday to consider all options for raising revenue as they hunt for ways to trim the gargantuan $14.8 trillion national debt.”

  8. Joe Utasi says:

    My seminar at Mother Earth News Fair was a wonderful success. I thought getting applause was great stuff, but then the phone started ringing about a week later! So far, 5 folks have made the decision to Do-it-Themselves with a little help… and I can’t be happier or more satisfied with the MEN experience!!