China’s renewable energy industry responded this week to a U.S. push to slap tariffs on cheap Chinese solar cells by conveying a simple message: Mess with us, brace for the worst, reports Maria Gallucci at Inside Climate News. “If there are no cheap Chinese solar panels in the market, many U.S. solar power developers will be forced to stop their plans,” said Cao Huabin, general manager of China’s largest solar plant developer. The developer announced recently that it would temporarily shelve $500 million worth of planned solar projects in California, New Jersey and Texas, in light of a recent trade complaint from seven American solar firms. The companies allege that illegally subsidized Chinese firms are distorting the market with underpriced panels—and making it impossible for them to compete. The case could lead to tariffs on soaring imports of Chinese solar goods which grew to $1.5 billion in 2010, but not all Americans approve of these tariffs. A group of American solar installers joined with U.S. subsidiaries of Chinese solar firms to launch the 25-member Coalition for Affordable Solar Energy, or CASE, to prevent new tariffs.
By Maria Gallucci, InsideClimate News