Solar provided more than twice as many jobs as coal in 2016

Adjusted for inflation, the federal minimum wage peaked in 1968 at $8.68 (in 2016 dollars). Since it was last raised in 2009, to the current $7.25 per hour, the federal minimum has lost about 9.6% of its purchasing power to inflation. Back in 2015, The Economist estimated that, given how rich the U.S. is and the pattern among other advanced economies in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, “one would expect America … to pay a minimum wage around $12 an hour.”

"5 facts about the minimum wage," Pew Research Center,, (accessed January 23, 2018).Solar provided more than twice as many jobs as coal in 2016."Last year, the solar industry employed many more Americans than coal, while wind power topped 100,000 jobs.""More than 373,000 Americans worked part or full time in solar energy, and just over 260,000 of them – or about 70 percent – spent a majority of their time on solar projects.Most solar energy jobs were in installation, construction and manufacturing, as the relatively new industry continued to add capacity. Solar power still generated a small share of United States energy output last year.The coal industry, which has shed jobs since 2012, primarily due to competition from cheap natural gas, employed just over 160,000 workers nationwide. About 54,000 coal jobs were in mining."Source: Popovich, Nandja. "Today's Energy Jobs Are in Solar, Not Coal," The New York Times, April 25, 2017.

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