NewEnergyNews: Protectionism Will Cripple U.S. Solar

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    Thursday, September 28, 2017

    Protectionism Will Cripple U.S. Solar

    President Trump wants protectionist measures against Chinese solar power. That’s going to hurt U.S. firms.

    Jonas Meckling and Llewelyn Hughes, September 25, 2017 (Washington Post)

    “…[T]he U.S. International Trade Commission] ruled that U.S. solar manufacturers are being injured by solar product imports. This gives the Trump administration an opportunity to increase duties on imported solar equipment, which would raise the costs of solar energy for companies and households in the United States…[The decision to grant relief to domestic manufacturers would hamper climate mitigation and] ignores the fact that many U.S. firms benefit from participating in global supply chains that govern the production of solar panels…[It would be] making trade policy on the basis of outdated assumptions about how products are made…[The] cost of utility-scale solar in the United States has fallen to 6 cents per kilowatt hour and the cost of household solar power is also falling rapidly…[making solar energy] competitive with more traditional fossil-fuel-based sources of power, such as coal and natural gas…[Protectionism] threatens to undermine these advances…[but the] case presents a political opportunity for President Trump to follow through on his threat to get tough with China on trade. It also gives him a chance to undermine the competitiveness of a key source of renewable energy…[For a president who touts the benefits of] fossil fuels, this may be too tempting to pass up…” click here for more

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