Bummer: Tariffs On Imported Solar Parts Increased To 30%

It’s the “biggest blow to the renewable energy market yet”

(Bloomberg) President Donald Trump dealt his biggest blow to the renewable energy industry yet.

On Monday, Trump approved duties of as much as 30 percent on solar equipment made outside the U.S., a move that threatens to handicap a $28 billion industry that relies on parts made abroad for 80 percent of its supply.

The tariffs are the latest action by Trump to undermine the economics of renewables. The administration already decided to pull the U.S. out of the Paris Agreement on climate change, sought to roll back Obama-era regulations on power plant-emissions and signed sweeping tax reforms that constrained financing for solar and wind. The import taxes are the most targeted strike on the industry yet and may have larger consequences for the energy world.

Isn’t it great how a news story jumps to opinion by paragraph 3? The first two have nothing to do with people using “renewables”: they’re welcome to do it. The last, tax reforms, simply mean that the federal government will no longer be pissing away money as did previously on projects that provided few jobs and often failed.

U.S. panel maker First Solar Inc. jumped as much as 9 percent to $75.20 in after-hours trading in New York. The Tempe, Arizona-based manufacturer stands to gain as costs for competing, foreign panels rise.

Just the threat of tariffs shook solar developers in recent months, with some hoarding panels and others stalling projects in anticipation of higher costs. The Solar Energy Industries Association projected 23,000 job losses this year in a sector that employed 260,000.

What’s going on is that China has been and still is dumping solar panels and parts at well below market prices, even taking losses, which harms American business who cannot compete with the artificially low prices. Hence the reason First Solar jumped. Because, as the story explains later, they are one of the last ones left, after all the others moved to China (often after taking money from the Obama administration during his first term)

The duties are lower than the 35 percent rate the U.S. International Trade Commissionrecommended in October after finding that imported panels were harming American manufacturers. The idea behind the tariffs is to raise the costs of cheap imports, particularly from Asia, and level the playing field for those who manufacture the parts domestically.

See? Bloomberg finally got around to explaining the reality.

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8 Responses to “Bummer: Tariffs On Imported Solar Parts Increased To 30%”

  1. Jeffery says:

    So tRump raised taxes on solar to bolster his buddies in the fossil fuel industry. Maybe he can give more subsidies to coal while he’s at it.

    • drowningpuppies says:

      Not long ago little guy claimed it was the Russkies who where best buds with the President.
      Oh well that’s what one gets when reading his staggeringly ignorant commentary.
      But the chuckles are worth it knowing the Heifer will get nowhere near the WH ever again.

      • david7134 says:

        Notice how jeff, shapes his lies. He assumes that Trump has friends in big oil or that big oil is even remotely interested in solar panels. Big oil likely makes a good bit from this failed tech. Then he fails to realize that the tax does not apply to product made in the US. The guy does not seem to understand the truth at all and only exhibits pure hate and bigotry. Maybe he is a good liberal to have on the comments as he shows how stupid they are as well as how hateful.

        • Jeffery says:

          Ah come on, dave. Just having a little fun. What happened to your sense of humor? We know he was really doing this to help his Russian buddies and hurt the US solar industry. Solar panels will cost more, people will be less willing to buy them. Econ 101.

        • Jeffery says:

          It’s tRump picking winners and losers, something Con Men say they oppose.

  2. BB-Idaho says:

    We would guess the Chinese would retaliate by raising the tariff on US coal imports, putting the other fifteen US coalminers out of business. Tariff wars = opposite of free markets.

  3. Jl says:

    In the game of picking winners and losers, nothing compares to the subsidies renewable (unreliable) energy receives.

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