Trump tariff on Solar panels choking NC's growth


We really (really) can't afford this blundering idiot much longer:

The 30 percent tariff is scheduled to last four years, decreasing by 5 percent per year during that time. Solar developers say the levy will initially raise the cost of major installations by 10 percent. Leading utility-scale developer Cypress Creek Renewables LLC said it had been forced to cancel or freeze $1.5 billion in projects - mostly in the Carolinas, Texas and Colorado - because the tariff raised costs beyond the level where it could compete, spokesman Jeff McKay said.

That amounted to about 150 projects at various stages of development that would have employed three thousand or more workers during installation, he said. The projects accounted for a fifth of the company’s overall pipeline. Developer Southern Current has made similar decisions on about $1 billion of projects, mainly in South Carolina, said Bret Sowers, the company’s vice president of development and strategy.

Probably don't need to say it again, but I'm going to say it again: The main (overriding) goal of NC's Renewable Energy Portfolio Standard (REPS) was to radically lower the costs of Solar panels so they could compete with dirty fossil fuels. These tariffs, for whatever strained logic brought them about, are doing the exact opposite of that. Speaking of that logic, Trump's aggressive push to keep coal plants operating undermines his rhetoric about helping US Solar panel manufacturers:

On June 1st—just as America’s fellow members of the G7, a club of the world’s biggest economies, were condemning Donald Trump’s tariffs on steel and aluminium at a meeting in Canada—the president announced a new regulatory plan for America’s energy market. The proposal, which was detailed in a 41-page memo circulated among senior White House staff, would prop up ailing coal- and nuclear-power generators by forcing electricity-grid operators to buy energy from unprofitable plants. The official justification for the policy was national security. But the chief beneficiaries would be a small number of companies, located mainly in Midwestern states whose voters backed Mr Trump in the presidential election of 2016 (see map).

Mr Trump’s latest proposal would direct regional grid operators to buy power from coal and nuclear plants, which have been struggling to compete with natural gas and renewable-energy sources for years. The cost, however, would be borne by consumers, and could come to as much as $12bn a year.

That's right, this oxygen thief is not only trying to poison us, he's going to make us pay extra to do it. Back to the tariffs, and the domestic jobs that actually won't be created:

Jobs in panel manufacturing are also limited due to increasing automation, industry experts said.

Heliene - a Canadian company in the process of opening a U.S. facility capable of producing 150 megawatts worth of panels per year - said it will employ between 130 and 140 workers in Minnesota.

“The factories are highly automated,” said Martin Pochtaruk, president of Heliene. “You don’t employ too many humans. There are a lot of robots.”

Those pesky humans. You have to pay them, they need food, water, and shelter. Not efficient at all.



Trump only wants to help

Trump only wants to help himself.