For the past few years, the idea of using solar power as an alternative source has been seen as a sustainable way of living for many people around the world.
In an effort to encourage residents and business owners to make the switch, some governments have offered tax cuts and other benefits for those willing to make the change. In the United States alone, solar panel users were able to produce more than 40 gigawatts of solar energy in 2016– enough to power 6.5 million homes in the country. This wasn’t limited to the USA alone, as many home and business owners have also started looking for solar installers on the Gold Coast, Germany, and other parts of the world.
Tariffs and Price Changes
This sounds very encouraging, as helping to save the environment by hiring or working as solar installers on the Gold Coast, for example, has never received such support or showed such promise in terms of career and employability. However, in January this year, President Donald Trump signed a 30% tariff on imported solar cells and modules. According to Reuters, this change greatly affected the price of solar panels and systems available in the country, resulting to the cancellation of up to $2.5 billion worth of solar installation projects since its finalization.
China supplies 8-9% of the United States’ demand for solar panels, but in terms of global contribution, it’s one of the top. In the 1990’s, Germany started giving incentives to those using solar power, and China saw the rising demand for solar panels. Soon, other European countries started following Germany’s footsteps, and by then, China was already an established figure in distributing the supplies.
What does the tariff have something to do with China?
With China being ahead of other countries globally in this industry, President Trump has seen the country’s manufacturing success as a problem for the United States in its effort to produce and distribute their own solar supplies domestically. By setting a tariff, the prices of solar panels from China would go up, discouraging people from buying it, and possibly, choosing domestically made solar panels instead.
Unfortunately, the move has successfully stopped solar power-related projects in the United States, but has done nothing in propelling the industry in the country.