Solar tariffs result in 10.5 GW of cancelled US solar projects

Solar system. Author: Oregon Department of Transportation. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic.

December 4 (Renewables Now) - The US is losing solar projects with a total capacity of 10.5 GW because of the tariffs on imports of solar cells and modules, according to a market impact analysis by Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

In addition to the cancelled solar deployment, the analysis shows that over 62,000 jobs in the US as well as USD 19 billion (EUR 17bn) in new private sector investment would be lost in the period 2017-2021 because of the tariffs.

The study, published on Tuesday, covers tariff impacts from April 2017, when bankrupt solar panel maker Suniva Inc filed a petition with the US International Trade Commission (ITC) asking for tariffs on international cells and modules made with foreign cells, until 2021.

According to SEIA, the US is facing over USD 10.5 million a day in unrealised economic activity because of the tariffs. For each new job created as a result of the tariff, 31 other jobs are lost along with 5.3 MW of solar deployment and almost USD 9.5 million of investment.

Nascent solar markets like Alabama, Nebraska, Kansas and the Dakotas are among the hardest hit by the solar tariffs that harm solar power's competitiveness.

The analysis comes as the ITC begins the midterm review process for the tariffs on December 5. The tariffs were first approved by US President Donald Trump in January 2018, beginning at 30% in the first year and going down to 25% in 2019, 20% in 2020 and 15% in 2021.

(USD 1.0 = EUR 0.9)

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Before joining Renewables Now, Alex was a UK-focused business news reporter. Now she is covering global news from the renewable energy industry with a special interest in M&A.

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