In this week’s Solar News Roundup, we’re breaking down the Trump Administration’s tariff on solar cells & modules and a new “major league” solar initiative.
The solar tariff is here, but the U.S. industry will survive
The Trump Administration reached a decision on the trade case brought forward by Suniva and SolarWorld last year, opting to impose a 30 percent tariff on imported solar panels. The tariff will fall annually by five percent over four years, and will end after 2021. While not the full tariff that Suniva and SolarWorld were seeking, it will have an effect on the U.S. solar industry in the short term.
While this new tariff is a setback for the solar industry, we expect it to have a limited effect on residential solar in the United States. Check out EnergySage’s analysis of the tariff to read about the actual impact it might have on the industry, and how quote comparison tools help consumers combat high prices.
Petco Park announces largest solar array in Major League Baseball
On a more positive note, Petco Park, home of the San Diego Padres baseball team, announced plans to install a solar array in excess of 300 kilowatts (kW) by March of this year, which will be the largest solar array at any stadium in the MLB. The system will be able to power the front office of the Padres and will help the organization save millions throughout its lifetime.
The project will also help the City of San Diego in reaching the goals outlined in their Climate Action Plan, namely the goal of using 100 percent renewable energy throughout the city by 2035. This isn’t the first time the Padres have made a sustainable decision at their home stadium. In 2015, they switched their lighting systems to run on all LED sport lights, cutting light usage by 40 percent and reducing costs in areas like light maintenance and operation.
Organizations like the Padres, combined with forward-thinking climate goals from cities like San Diego, will need to be the driver of sustainable action in a time when our government administration fails to see the importance and benefits of energy efficiency and renewable technology. Petco Park’s commitment to solar in particular is an encouraging sign, and many more groups, teams, and local governments can take advantage of the monetary and environmental benefits of going solar in the months and years to come.