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'Reckless': Dealing Serious Blow to Renewable Transition, Trump Approves Tariffs on Imported Materials

'Reckless': Dealing Serious Blow to Renewable Transition, Trump Approves Tariffs on Imported Materials

Jessica Corbett, staff writer
"Tens of thousands of jobs in the solar sector could be stamped out, and it could hurt momentum at a time when we need to massively ramp up clean energy to reduce carbon emissions."

With a “president” whose nose is buried far into/up the fossil fuel conglomerates tuchus this is no surprise. The trump regime has been and is dedicated to enhancing oil & gas corporate profits, drilling rights, exploitation, and roll-back of environmental protections associated with drilling (and fracking) and pipelines, ignoring all dangers to our pricelsss water and air quality, that we as a nation and planet will be lucky to survive - the ever accelerating, increasing momentum of MMGW.

The idiot-in-chief is doing the entire earth great harm - a process of his malleability, astonishing and stifling ignorance, lack of education and wider (other than “businessman”) life experience - a gross, stupid person by any measure!


Didn’t we go through this crap with St. Ronnie? That time it set US solar back 30 years. We’ll never learn.


H.L. Mencken:

“As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.”

Thank you my fellow CD participants for helping me to stay sane.


Someone correct me if I’m wrong, but doesn’t this make US-made solar panels more competitive in terms of price?


Trump, the “Job Killer.” No friend to the working man and woman.

Let us watch how the MSM reports this.

I thank Medicinal Marijuana, and you guys too.


Yes, by raising the price for everyone and by cancelling many beneficial solar energy projects. Higher prices (except on fossil fuels of course) are last thing we need for the transition to renewable energy. This tariff was imposed at the request of a couple small US solar panel manufacturers - all the rest of the US solar power industry was against it.

And you gotta love the way a tariff was also imposed on Chinese-made washing machines as fig leaf to cover this nakedly obvious pro-fossil fuel measure.

Domestic manufacturing is great, but Instead of punitive tariffs, government subsidies should be used. The amount paid out by consumers/taxpayers is exactly the same either way, except that in the latter case, the cost is spread out to all who benefit from, in this case, taking action on global warming.


Only in the way that taxing Priuses would make Escalades and Hummers more competitive – by pushing the market to a less efficient state and making consumers pay for it.


Okay. We know capitalists are the raging atrocity loving enemy of democracy, human health, peace, and planet Earth.

Let’s get busy on this.

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Forgive my ignorance, but how exactly will this lead to 23,000 Americans loosing their jobs? Is it because solar companies are also owned by self-interested, profit seeking billionaires who will lay those employees off to maintain their bottom line rather than exploring other alternatives (furloughs, reduced work hours)? Or is there something else I’m missing?

Jobs in solar installation will be lost. Installation companies I think are usually relatively small businesses owned by local people. The reduced price of solar panels is playing a big part in driving the many solar installation projects that are underway or planned. Low prices for solar panels are critical so it seems like a sure thing that a tariff will be a major setback to the use of solar power and the efforts to fight global warming which are already insufficient.

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Does the Constitution give this issue to congress to establish and run or to the executive branch?

No, it is because of when the price of something goes up, fewer buyers afford it, so the amount of business for the solar contractors declines. And furloughs and reduced hours are lost jobs.


This is one case I agree with our so-called President. I’m for solar energy. In fact, I SolarWorld panels put on my roof last year. I wanted to “buy American” not just because some of the money I spent went to US workers, but also because the panels are made in a more environmental and pro-worker way.

Last I heard, China was the largest solar panel producer. But last I heard, the panels were produced with coal-fired power. In contrast, in Oregon, where SolarWorld panels are made, 70% of electricity derives from non-fossil sources – they’ve got a lot of hydro up there. Solar panels require a lot of toxic chemicals, and I expect Oregon’s standards are much higher than China’s. I expect the same holds for worker protections and worker wages.

We should be paying the price to ensure that our renewable energy is produced in a way that’s pro-environment and pro-worker. What we need is an end to fossil fuel subsidies and a carbon tax.


Trade agreements, which are treaties, require congressional ratification. But the rules regarding importation and exportation of goods are purely a function of the executive branch - specifically the Dept. of Commerce. They can do anything they want that is not prohibited by a pre-existing treaty.

The TPP would have prohibited these solar panel tariffs, although it had other provision that would have allowed the US to impose things that are bad for the environment on other countries through its non-tariff barriers to trade provisions.

I pay a premium for lots of local products. And this tariff phases out in four years.

I’m not so sure about that. From what I’ve both read and observed, it seems like most of the installation lately has been through major corporations like SolarCity/Tesla, SunRun, SunPower, and FirstSolar. Plus, most of the small businesses specialize primarily in HVAC and solar installations are more of a side gig.

That depends on your point of view really. If I were one of those employees, I think I’d prefer being furloughed or having reduced hours over outright unemployment. And I am speaking as someone who has been furloughed. These days, unemployment might as well be a death sentence.

Yes - in spades.

American made solar panels - for an American solar industry.

In Canada I want the same - Canadian made solar panels for Candian use.

This is not rocket science.

The so called progressive left goes for the cheapest price at the expense of North American workers.

They still don’t get it - populism is democracy in action.

Because the Democrats in the States don’t get it, because the Liberals in Canada don’t get it - we are left with Trump.

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