April 3, 2015 / 5:45 PM / 4 years ago

Obama plugs program to train veterans for solar industry jobs

U.S. President Barack Obama delivers remarks on clean energy after a tour of a solar power array at Hill Air Force Base, Utah April 3, 2015. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

HILL AIR FORCE BASE (Reuters) - President Barack Obama on Friday unveiled an expansion of U.S. government efforts to train military veterans for jobs in the solar power industry during a visit to Utah.

The administration announced a new goal of training 75,000 people to enter the solar work force by 2020. That is an increase from a goal announced last year of training 50,000 workers by the same deadline.

Many of those workers would be veterans, administration officials said.

The Department of Defense plans to have “Solar Ready Vets” programs at 10 bases across the country to train military members who are returning to civilian life for solar jobs.

“It’s going to train transitioning military personnel for careers in this growing industry,” Obama said of the program during remarks at Hill Air Force Base in Utah, standing near a set of solar panel installations.

Officials declined to provide a figure for what the programs would cost.

Reporting by Jeff Mason

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