Nov 4, 2020

U.S. Trade Court Blocks Trump Administration Bid to End Solar Tariff Loophole


On Saturday, October 24, a U.S. Trade Court temporarily blocked the Trump administrations’ attempt to close a tariff loophole for double-sided solar panels.  The 2018 tariffs were an attempt by the Trump administration to get tough on China which dominates the solar panel manufacturing industry, and to boost the U.S. industry.  The administration approved four years of tariffs on solar panel imports, starting at 30%, and being reduced by five percentage points each subsequent year.  The tariffs granted the exclusion for bifacial panels, as those panels were considered a niche product at the time.  The administration now claims that it… Read more

Jan 22, 2020

Solar Tariffs Harm U.S. Industry

On January 22, 2018 the Trump administration placed $8.5 billion in tariffs on imports of solar modules and cells in an attempt to shield U.S. industry from unfair global competition from China and South Korea. The Solar Energy Industry Association has released a report laying out the estimated economic impact of the tariffs.  According to the report, Chinese solar modular makers have set up factories in Malaysia and Vietnam to avoid the tariffs, so the modular brands entering the U.S. market are much the same as before, but at higher prices.  In addition, an estimated 62,000 jobs were lost or… Read more

Oct 8, 2019

Trump Administration Withdraws Tariff Exemption for Bifacial Solar Panels

The Trump Administration announced that effective October 28, it will be eliminating a loophole granted four months ago on tariffs for bifacial solar panels. The panels will now be subject to the 25% tariff on imported solar cells and modules that the Trump Administration announced in early 2018. The tariffs on imported solar equipment, introduced in January 2018 at 30% and stepping down by 5% every year until they expire in 2022, were part of the Trump Administration’s trade tariffs targeted against China, the current global leader in solar panel manufacturing. While the rescission is expected to benefit American panel… Read more

Feb 12, 2018

Solar Tariffs Set to Slow Expansion of Solar in U.S.

Solar Panels - Solar Tariffs - Solar Energy

President Donald Trump’s tariffs on solar panel imports to the U.S. are expected to add roughly 10% to the cost of a utility-scale solar farm in the U.S. and 3% to rooftop units bought for homes according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance.  The tariffs are projected to cut U.S. installations by 11% over the next five years, but the decision is unlikely to reshape the economics of the photovoltaic business on the global stage or threaten China’s leadership of the industry.  While Bell Labs in the U.S. invented the modern photovoltaic cell in the 1950s, the industry flourished elsewhere while… Read more