ITC finds injury in solar manufacturing trade case

Finding Injury:

Finding “injury” in the solar manufacturing trade case brought by Suniva and Solar World means the ITC attributed financial problems to the low cost of imported solar panels.  It’s now up to President Trump to accept, amend or reject.

However, Solar PV panel manufacturing has been on decline for a number of years.  In fact, the rapid decline in module prices worldwide has more to do with the oversupply in the market than import pressure.  Prices fell so fast, manufacturers couldn’t recover costs of production.

Job Losses:

The solution is not setting high minimum prices for imported solar modules.  Instead, this action would be a huge blow to solar industry jobs.

The ITC made the ruling despite a bi-partisan group of US Senators urging the ITC to not impose tariffs on solar panels.  Their letter stated, “Increasing costs will stop solar growth dead in its tracks, threatening tens of thousands of American workers in the solar industry and jeopardizing billions of dollar in investment in communities across the country.”

As we know in the industry, solar companies have never enjoyed large margins, so a drastic slow down could kill many businesses.  Greentech Media predicts the remedies requested by the petition “would eliminate half of potential solar deployments over their term in exchange for limited new domestic module manufacturing.”

At its peak, Suniva employed 400 workers.  Bringing back US manufacturing will create jobs, but not many.  Companies interested in solar manufacturing will likely be highly automated.  For example, K’NEX has 110 presses to make their toys.  It only takes 8 operators to work on the floor.


Bringing manufacturing back to the US takes “low triple-digit millions” investment.  Cost that must be recovered within the four year “remedy” period.  According to the article “Six Ways to Encourage American Solar Manufacturing Without Import Duties,” government policies designed to stimulate local manufacturing would do more to support the industry. Ideas include investment tax credits, expanding federal procurement, direct support for domestic manufacturing, loan guarantees, subsidizing the supply chain and supporting workforce and technology development.


Suniva’s Solar Trade Case

suniva solar trade case

The US Government will move forward with Suniva’s Solar Trade Case. Suniva has requested a four-year tariff schedule on solar panels imported from anywhere in the world. If approved, the tariff would double the price of solar panels imported into the US. Although Suniva manufactures its solar panels in the US, they sold a majority stake and control of the business to a Chinese Company in 2016.

SEIA (Solar Energy Industry Association) has launched a campaign to stop the proposed tariff on the grounds that Suniva is not a representative of the domestic industry as it has been defined. REIA intends to everything in its power stop this blatant attempt to slow down the solar industry. The hearing is scheduled for August 15th at the International Trade Commission headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Solar Fiesta and Community Fair 2017


Solar Fiesta

Sponsorship Opportunities and Benefits

Leadership Level:
Top sponsor placement in all print and on web site.
Full page color ad in program.
Five (5) Fiesta shirts w/logos and names.
10’x20′ booth space.
$5,000.00 tax deductible sponsorship.

Support Level:
Middle sponsor placement in all print and on web site.
Half page color ad in program.
Three (3) Fiesta shirts w/logos and names.
10’x10′ booth space. (Upgrade to 10’x20′ at 50%)
$3,000.00 tax deductible sponsorship.

Associate Level:
Lower sponsor placement in all print and on web site.
Quarter page color ad in program.
Two (2) Fiesta shirts w/logos and names
10’x10′ booth space. (Upgrade at 75%)
$1,000.00 tax deductible sponsorship.
The sponsorships will help pay for the cost of advertising, the program, tee shirts, etc. The program will be a special print version of the “Sun Paper” in full color and will include the advertising for the sponsor as outlined above. The shirts provided for the sponsors will be long sleeve collared shirts with the company’s logo, the Fiesta logo, and the name of the person at the Fiesta. Sizes and names will need to be supplied two months in advance.

Standard booth size is 10’x10′. It can be upgraded to 10’x20′.

Advertising sizes can be upgraded to a half or full page ad.

Growing Industry in New Mexico

industry in new mexico

A report out by the Solar Foundation shows that the solar industry continues to have a positive economic impact on the country. According to the report, “The industry added $84 billion to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP) in 2016.”

The study also found that the solar industry created 260,000 jobs, with one solar related job supporting an additional 2.03 jobs. These workers, who earned $50 billion in compensation, then contribute to other economic activity, considered induced impacts, based on spending by workers and employees, and this contributed an additional $62.5 billion in sales to the economy.

The top five states for the solar industry are California, Florida, New York, Ohio and Texas. While New Mexico is the best state suited to install solar, it ranks 8th for solar jobs per capita. Even though it has the second highest range for PV generation hours, it is cooler here than Arizona, so panels actually generate more energy.

REIA wants to see New Mexico take it’s rightful place among the top states with the best economic impact from the growing solar industry.

This is the kind of economic impact that could really help New Mexico. Solar jobs year/year growth in our state increased 64% between 2015 and 2016 from 1,899 jobs in the sector to 2,929 jobs. Policy makers looking for job creation opportunities should be looking for ways to support the growing solar industry in New Mexico. It’s the best opportunity for growth that we have.

Fact sheet: New Mexico Solar Jobs Census 2016

NCREB Funded Solar Energy Projects

Albuquerque RFP

The City of Albuquerque Purchasing Division is seeking sealed electronic bids for the
following goods and/or services by the designated times and dates:

RFB#: P2017000030
Description: New Clean Renewable Energy Bond (NCREB) funded Solar Energy Projects
Due by Date and Time: Wednesday, July 5, 2017 @ 4:00 PM


For additional information or questions, contact the City Purchasing Office at (505) 768-3320. For TTY call (505)768-2983.

Thank you,

Jenny Ramirez
Assistant Procurement Officer
City of Albuquerque
One Civic Plaza Dr. NW | 7th Floor, Room 7012
Telephone: 505-768-3330

US Energy-Related Carbon Dioxide Emissions

Carbon Dioxide Emissions

The following analysis from the US Energy Information Administration shows U.S. Energy-Related Carbon Dioxide Emissions from 1990 to 2014.  Figure 11 shows that the DECLINING CARBON INTENSITY OF THE ENERGY MIX SINCE 2008 HAS CONTRIBUTED TO A GENERAL DECOUPLING OF CARBON DIOXIDE EMISSIONS FROM ECONOMIC GROWTH.  As we continue to increase our nation’s capacity to generate electricity from the sun, we can continue to grow the US economy without increasing our carbon emissions.  That’s good news for all of us.

PV Module Reliability Workshop at NREL

PV Module Reliability

CFV Solar Test Lab employees attended the annual PV Module Reliability Workshop sponsored by the National Renewable Energy Lab (NREL) in Colorado this week.   Many of the top manufacturers, developers, and scientists from around the globe were in attendance to discuss issues related to PV module and system reliability.   The CFV poster presentation “Module Deflection Profiles for MLT” authored by Larry Pratt, Nick Riedel, Greg Peacock and Michael Yamasaki won first prize in its category “General Standards”.  The poster summarized an internal CFV study done to show that the force applied by its mechanical load stand that uses discrete hydraulic pistons is roughly equivalent to other methods (like sand bags or air bags) that use a continuous applied force across the module surface.  The results of the study resulted in the rewriting of a portion of the new IEC standard for Mechanical Load Testing.

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