What to Know about the Proposed Solar Tariffs

U.S. Homeowners may need to act quickly before new solar tariffs go into effect

Earlier this fall, the federal trade panel declared that surging imports of solar panels from Chinese manufactures have hurt U.S. panel makers and have asked for a tariff to be implemented to discourage foreign panels.

The Bloomberg Report had this to say about the proposed tariff: “The commission and the president need to understand that punishing Asian panel makers would do more than damage trade relations: It would also cripple the thriving U.S. solar-energy business.”

The U.S. International Trade Commission voted to uphold the complaint brought by two US solar manufacturers that feel that the low-cost imports have damaged their business. The decision was opposed by the much larger U.S. solar installation industry, which has benefitted by the influx of the economical panels spark an increase in the construction of solar farms and rooftop systems around the country.

Kirsten Korosec of Fortune adds that Suniva, the US panel manufacturer who brought the complaint, “has requested that solar cells brought into the US have a 40-cent tariff. The company wants solar panels to have a minimum price of 78 cents a watt, which is two-thirds more expensive than the cheapest panels on the market.”

According to Shayle Kann and MJ Shiao of Greentech Media,We estimate that the net impact to our base forecast could range from just 9 percent under a 10-cents-per-watt tariff to 48 percent under a 40-cents-per-watt tariff. The biggest impacts would be in the utility-scale solar sector, which is most sensitive to price increases, while the residential sector would be the most resilient.” Ben Zientara with solarpowerrocks.com mentioned that is unclear how much this could increase system costs, but they have a good idea showing 10–15% increase in system costs.

Consumers who are thinking about going solar may want to move forward with their projects in order to take advantage of the lower cost panels currently available. It will be up to the International Trade Commission and the president to decide if the tariff will be implemented or not.

How could this affect homeowners?

Consumers who are thinking about going solar may want to move forward with their projects in order to take advantage of the lower cost panels currently available. It will be up to the International Trade Commission and the president to decide if the tariff will be implemented or not.

Thinking about going solar?

Head to Solarhood.net to start the process of going solar. We’ll give you a free, online home solar assessment and when you’re ready, we’ll connect you with top local installers. Because tariffs may take effect this winter, it’s important to get the process going now to lock in low prices. Lucky for you, Solarhood is the fastest, most affordable way to go solar at home. :)

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