America’s solar industry is about to feel the heat from a possible tariff on imported panels

Solar trackers are seen in South Burlington, Vt., on Wednesday, July 27, 2011. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot)

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A Trump administration trade decision is expected to drive up the cost of solar panels built overseas. Now, American solar companies are scrambling to buy cheap panels from China and other Asian countries.

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Reuters reports that solar panel installations in the United States hit a record last year, and the domestic industry employs more than 260,000 workers. Low-cost solar cells and panels made in Asia have decreased costs by around 70 percent since 2010, inspiring American homeowners and business owners to go solar. In fact, about 95 percent of cells and panels sold in the U.S. are made in other countries.

But Suniva, a Georgia-based solar cell manufacturer, recently asked the Trump administration to increase the price of imported panels. While it would give domestic companies a chance to compete, a potential tariff has sent customers into panic mode, buying up as many low-price panels as they can.

The decision could also impact homeowners, as it could slow down residential installations of solar panels.

Read more at Reuters.

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