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US solar PV project pipeline

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US Solar PV Project Pipeline In Danger Of Proposed Trade Rulings

Recent anti-subsidy and anti-dumping rulings proposed by the US Department of Commerce in response to imports of crystalline silicon solar PV cells and modules from China and Taiwan could have massive consequences for the US solar PV project pipeline as a whole.

The latest NPD Solarbuzz United States Deal Tracker shows that more than 3 GW of projects currently in the US PV project pipeline were set to use Chinese modules. But with the preliminary tariffs of 26-165% on Chinese and Taiwanese imports, these projects may be forced to look elsewhere. 

“Large-scale ground-mount PV installations are particularly vulnerable to cost increases and potential disruption, as many have signed power purchase agreements at aggressive rates,” said Michael Barker, senior analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. “Any increase in cost for the projects could mean renegotiation, delay, or even termination.”

US solar PV project pipeline

“Solar PV is rapidly becoming more cost-effective as a power generation source,” said Christine Beadle, analyst at NPD Solarbuzz. “Project developers are swiftly adapting to new market dynamics and are driving strong growth, especially in community and carport systems, but this growth may be interrupted if any external factors increase prices significantly.”

According to PV-Magazine, a number of Chinese PV makers were singled out for special duty rates — including Trina Solar who only received a rate of 26.33%. However, “a list of 42 companies including market leaders Yingli, Canadian Solar and Hanwha SolarOne were assessed at a 42.33% anti-dumping duty rate” with the highest rate for companies not on the Department of Commerce’s list.

While these rulings are preliminary, they are not unexpected, and in the long run could prove devastating to the short-term health of the US solar PV market.

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