The 30% tariffs on imported solar panels that the Trump administration announced is set to hurt the American solar energy sector, infers Tom DiChristopher of CNBC. Solar farm projects could see their costs rise significantly, which risks hampering job growth in the industry. As a whole, it has created tens of thousands of jobs over the past few years, having seen an annual expansion of over 20%. In the beginning of 2017, 260,000 Americans worked in the solar industry. While the tariffs could create some jobs, it would likely take them away in other areas. This decision could throttle the growth of America’s solar energy sector.
The importing of subsidized solar panels from countries like China risks choking American manufacturers. President Trump is right to impose tariffs on these imports, holds Jeff Spross of The Week. China funds its own solar industry in an attempt to flood the international market, driving out competitors and making its own companies dominant. The tariffs will allow local solar panel producers to get a foothold on the market, which would benefit the country as a whole. Being over-reliant on imports while allowing local companies to suffer would be bad for America. Trump is right to protect US solar companies from unfair competition.