Executive Briefings

Trump’s Solar Tariffs Are Clouding the Industry’s Future

At this century-old farm just outside Durham, symmetrical rows of shining blue solar panels have replaced the soybeans and tobacco that Tommy Vinson and his family used to grow here.

It is one of many solar farms that have sprung up around North Carolina, transforming a state long battered by global offshoring into the second-largest generator of solar electricity after California.

“It’s still reaping a very good harvest,” said April Vinson, who is married to Tommy. “It’s just not a traditional kind of farm.”

Across North Carolina, textile factories and tobacco farms have disappeared, giving way to fields of solar panels.

But for those venturing into solar farming like Vinson, the future of this vibrant industry is now cloudy. Last Monday, the Trump administration announced that it would impose steep tariffs on imported solar panels, which could raise the cost of solar power in the years ahead, slowing adoption of the technology and costing jobs.

Trump has long championed trade barriers as a way to protect United States manufacturers from foreign competitors. That Monday, he also slapped tariffs on imported washing machines, and his advisers say additional measures on steel, aluminum and other products will soon be coming.

Read full article

It is one of many solar farms that have sprung up around North Carolina, transforming a state long battered by global offshoring into the second-largest generator of solar electricity after California.

“It’s still reaping a very good harvest,” said April Vinson, who is married to Tommy. “It’s just not a traditional kind of farm.”

Across North Carolina, textile factories and tobacco farms have disappeared, giving way to fields of solar panels.

But for those venturing into solar farming like Vinson, the future of this vibrant industry is now cloudy. Last Monday, the Trump administration announced that it would impose steep tariffs on imported solar panels, which could raise the cost of solar power in the years ahead, slowing adoption of the technology and costing jobs.

Trump has long championed trade barriers as a way to protect United States manufacturers from foreign competitors. That Monday, he also slapped tariffs on imported washing machines, and his advisers say additional measures on steel, aluminum and other products will soon be coming.

Read full article