US solar industry grows as prices of solar panels decline

Global Business

The U.S. Commerce Department has ruled that Chinese solar panel makers are dumping their products on the U.S market and receiving subsidies. Despite a protracted dispute, the U.S. solar industry expects strong growth. More U.S states are able to offer consumers the same or better price for their electricity than traditional fossil fuel power. CCTV America’s Daniel Ryntjes reported this story.

US solar industry grows as prices of solar panels decline

The U.S. Commerce Department has ruled that Chinese solar panel makers are dumping their products on the U.S market and receiving subsidies. Despite a protracted dispute, the U.S. solar industry expects strong growth.CCTV America's Daniel Ryntjes reported this story.

There was a time when only highly motivated environmentalists would invest in solar energy. That’s because it cost a lot more to install panels than to simply buy conventional electricity off the local grid. But that’s changing fast because the price of panels has fallen dramatically, according to The Solar Energy Industries Association.

“During this year in the U.S., solar has provided more than a third of the new electricity generation in the United States second only to natural gas. We see natural gas going in at about 40 percent of the new generation capacity in the United States and solar at 30-35 percent. So we’re right up there,” Tom Kimbis, Vice-President, Solar Energy Industries Association said.

Whether solar is as cheap or cheaper than traditional sources is still dependent on several factors, including state laws and the price of electricity supplied by local power companies.

The Solar Energy Industries Association says that the current solar trade disputes with China have been dampening the potential growth rate of an industry that will still expand by 40 percent this year.

“Would it be faster if we didn’t have any litigation? Absolutely. Because you would see much more certainty among the investors, which would then in turn lower the cost to the developers because the costs of money would come down, making us even more competitive,” Kimbis said.