Frequently Asked Questions
What is the map?
The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map is a comprehensive, dynamic tool that shows the economic impact of clean energy growth across the country. The map is a non-partisan, free-to-use public resource that captures investments and jobs in the U.S. wind and solar and jobs in the energy efficiency industries.
What is the map’s purpose?
The map presents users with data from established industry sources and examines the economic contribution of clean energy from the national level down to the state voting district. Equipped with economic data, map users, including citizens, advocates and policymakers, can understand how investments in clean energy impact the local, state and national economy and make informed decisions about energy policies.
Localizing data is important for demonstrating the benefits on a street-level basis and enabling the comparison of benefits by political jurisdiction. The national and state top-line numbers are very important for overall impact, and will be incorporated into the map once they can be localized. What makes this map unique is its goal of making transparent the direct community benefits for map users by showing what clean energy is doing for them, where they live.
Why is the map important now?
State and federal policymakers are facing legislative decisions that could impact the competitiveness of clean energy significantly, so it’s essential to provide impartial facts to citizens and politicians as they weigh policy options. On a global scale, advancing clean energy industries is becoming the standard. U.S. corporations and national governments around the world are taking significant steps to reduce their environmental impact because clean energy makes economic sense.
Who created the map?
Kevala, Inc., a San Francisco-based software analytics company, developed the map. Kevala provides data-driven insights for the evolving energy market by combining proprietary analytics with advanced grid mapping. Kevala’s goal is to accelerate a clean energy future by making energy related data meaningful, transparent and broadly accessible.
Why is Kevala qualified to create such a map?
Kevala specializes in aggregating data from a diverse range of sources, developing proprietary analytics on top of its datasets, and regularly refreshing those datasets. In 2016, Kevala raised $1.7 million from the U.S. Department of Energy’s SunShot Initiative to help scale its Grid Assessor platform, a mapping and grid analytics software that helps solar energy system developers identify the best project locations based on demand and grid value.
Is this map associated with any governing agencies or bodies?
The map has no official association with any government body. Kevala developed the map and will continue to update its data. As a free public resource, the map is available for any citizen or organization to use.
Who owns the map?
Kevala built and will maintain the map with updated data, but cleanenergyprogress.com is a free public resource that anyone can view and use.
How are “Partners” associated with the map?
Partners are part of a voluntary, joint effort to promote the U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map as a valuable resource. Organizations promoting and using the map have a common goal to advocate for clean energy growth, as we understand that policy incentives and investments in clean energy are creating millions of jobs in various industries across many areas of the United States.
Is this the first map of its kind, or are their other similar maps?
To date, there is no other resource that compiles economic data on the wind, solar and energy efficiency industries across the United States in an interactive and accessible format. However, other public resources can be used in conjunction with the U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map when evaluating the energy sector. For example, this interactive map focuses on clean energy job creation in the Midwest specifically.
What is the value of solar, wind and energy efficiency investment in the U.S.?
The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map estimates investment of $234 billion in solar and wind energy in the United States, with solar accounting for roughly $72 billion and wind accounting for roughly $162 billion.
*The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map does not present energy efficiency investment because of a lack of consistent and comprehensive data for energy efficiency projects and investment estimates.
How many American jobs does the solar, wind and energy efficiency industries provide?
The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map shows approximately 2.2 million jobs in the solar, wind, and energy efficiency sectors nationwide. Wind accounted for nearly 105,000 jobs, solar accounted for more than 260,000 jobs, and energy efficiency accounted for nearly 1.9 million jobs across the United States.
Why do other credible sources show different national figures?
The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map utilizes national data developed using conservative methods and disaggregated at the electoral jurisdiction level. Other credible sources do not provide data at the level of spatial detail needed for presentation on the map. Because the map uses conservative, disaggregated data with some time lag, it is reasonable to conclude that actual national totals may be higher than represented based on other studies. For example, the 2017 study by U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) estimates 2.2 million energy efficiency jobs, compared to the estimated 1.9 million jobs in energy efficiency from the U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map (which sources their data from E2 and E4 the Future; see cleanenergyprogress.com/methodology for details).
The data sources from the U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map and the U.S. DOE reports differ and present a trade-off: the map utilizes older data that provides the geospatial information necessary to provide this hyper-local information, whereas the more recent U.S. DOE data cannot be mapped out at a sub-state level of detail. Kevala plans to help other researchers understand the spatial detail needed so future studies can be geographically located on the U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map.
How often will the map’s data be updated?
The U.S. Clean Energy Progress Map will be updated semiannually, though investment, job and census data sources are updated annually. Some data sources have time lags. For example, the U.S. Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) data reported in 2017 covers information through 2016, and Environmental Entrepreneurs and E4 the Future data reported in 2016 covers information through 2015.
Who can access the map?
How do you use the map?
Can users export and share data from the map?
Which geographic areas are represented on the map?
How should information that’s pulled from the map be cited?
Which data sources does the map use?
- U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA)
- U.S. Geologic Service
- Solar Energy Industries Association
- National Renewable Energy Lab
- GreenTech Media
- Lawrence Berkeley National Lab
- Environmental Entrepreneurs and E4TheFuture
- American Wind Energy Association
- The Solar Foundation
In addition to building the map and managing myriad data sources, Kevala used proprietary visual mapping methods to augment the distributed solar projects dataset.
What is the methodology for collecting data?
How spatially precise are the map’s data?
Why does the map use economic as opposed to environmental data?
Why are only wind, solar and energy efficiency represented on the map?
Does the map compare the economics of clean energy to other energy industries like coal or oil and gas?
Does the map take government subsidies or tax credits into account?
Will new data sets or functionalities be added to the map?
If you have additional questions, please contact us.