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Solar power industry faces obstacles with Pres. Trump's plans for tariff
28 January 2018, 12:38 | Vickie Mathis
Who Wins And Loses From Tariff Placed On Solar Imports
Canada and Mexico seem disinclined at the moment to rework NAFTA, nor does China feel the need to agree with whatever the United States asks for. Then in 2010, the China State Council listed renewable energy as one of seven industries eligible for special government incentives and loans.
"Renewables have boomed because costs keep coming down and businesses and consumers are pushing for green power", said Andy Smith, an analyst at Edward Jones.
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"Nothing that Trump has said or done yet is going to change that". The rest is what's known as distributed capacity, meaning small-scale projects that generate energy at many sites.
During his campaign, Donald Trump vowed to impose tariffs on imported goods and toss aside the North American Free-Trade Agreement if he could not renegotiate for terms he felt were favorable to America. This decision came in response to a complaint filed by two solar companies, but much of the industry, which trade groups say will increase the cost of solar projects and depress demand. Rep. Mark Sanford (R-S.C.) this week called the tariffs a mistake, pointing to a $380 million investment that South Korean company Samsung recently made in SC. It views the tariffs as a temporary setback, not a knockout punch.
Beck predicts the cost of solar energy modules will go up, even if they're built in the US.
What does all this mean for the future of the solar industry in Texas? Birsic is "excited" about where the tariffs landed compared with what he expected.
Here again, the decision to slap tariffs on solar-panel imports isn't being met with universal acclaim.
Goldman Sachs this week warned Trump is "more likely than not" to slap levies on the metal that's used in everything from cars to cans, potentially boosting costs for Americans.
Tim Brightbill said the company is in the process of hiring more people because of the new tariffs. It should be the Wild West when it comes to global trade, with the last factory standing the victor, no matter how many trade rules it defied to get there. Instead, they want prosecution, which is punishing trade violators whose cheating destroys American manufacturing and jobs.
Coal's share of the electric grid plummeted to 30% previous year, from more than half in 2001, according to the EIA. Part of that revolution has involved the rise of fracking, which has made natural gas cheap and abundant.
"Really, a mystery at this point", said Eisenbraun.
New Mexico Sen. Martin Heinrich, in a letter to the International Trade Commission, wrote: "The solar industry is now booming across the nation".
It could do the same over the next few years by booking solar panel sales past the end of tariffs in 2021.
In some major markets, such as California, bringing large amounts of solar generation online is depressing wholesale electricity market prices, which erodes the value of the electricity that these systems produce.
Bank of America Merrill Lynch expects clean energy will account for up to 80% of all the new power in the world through 2040.
For comparison, the coal industry only supports about.
One of Trump's first moves was to advance the stalled Keystone and Dakota Access oil pipelines. The levies should ease pressure on surviving panel makers, but pricier imports will set back most of the sector.
The decision comes hard on the heels of Washington derailing two deals involving Chinese companies - the planned partnership that would have seen AT&T sell Huawei's smartphones in the U.S. market and the blocking of Alibaba's proposed acquisition of the money transfer service MoneyGram - both ostensibly on national security concerns.
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