- Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) head Rhone Resch handled the affairs of SEIA for good 12 years
- During his tenure, solar grew as an industry in the US, adding millions of jobs
- Most recently, his efforts were instrumental in getting the crucial investment tax credit (ITC) extended through 2021
- Resch did not offer a reason to leave SEIA, but stated he wants to move on to ‘new challenges and opportunities that lie ahead’
The President and CEO of strongest American solar power lobby group, the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) Rhone Resch has announced that he plans to step down from his current role at SEIA. He will step down on May 31, 2016.
In the 12 years that he led the SEIA, the American solar industry saw major growth with solar becoming a 10 GW strong annual market by 2015. During his tenure, the federal government created, modified and extended the much awaited and debated Investment Tax Credit (ITC) (see ITC extended) multiple times since 2005. The extension of ITC is probably something he will always be remembered for. In the same period, state renewable portfolio standards (RPS) were expanded and solar industry in the US now is more than 30 GW strong, employing 200,000 people.
Solar as an industry has since ‘pumped more than $150 billion into the economy during difficult economic times’ stated the official press release on the matter from SEIA.
Resch did not state any specific reason for leaving SEIA. He said, “With the ITC extended through 2021 and solar energy markets growing throughout the country, now is the right time for me to move on to new challenges and opportunities that lie ahead.”
He was also at the helm of affairs when the trade dispute between China and the US escalated, however, Resch and SEIA supported a scenario of no import duties to ensure solar manufacturers and the industry as a whole continue to progress without any regulatory impediments. Though working hard, this issue could not be solved so far – the US import tariffs are still in place.
SEIA will begin the executive search process before his departure and in the meantime will name an interim leader. Nat Kreamer, chairman of SEIA board of directors, commented, “He created a single, powerful voice for the industry, representing all technologies and markets. That unified front has been the hallmark of SEIA for the last 12 years and recently helped us secure a huge win at the federal level with the extension of the solar Investment Tax Credit (ITC), ensuring the solar industry’s role as an economic engine of growth for the United States for years to come.”