Click here to Find a Contractor in your area.
Welcome! Here are the website rules, as well as some tips for using this forum.
Need to contact us? Visit https://heatinghelp.com/contact-us/.

US to add large tariff to Chinese solar panels

Paul Pollets
Paul Pollets Member Posts: 3,415
<a href="http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2018232854_chinasolartariff18.html">http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/businesstechnology/2018232854_chinasolartariff18.html</a>

Comments

  • Mark Eatherton
    Mark Eatherton Member Posts: 5,837
    Did ya ever wonder...

    Where all this "tariff money" goes to?



    I do... If the Chinese can make the panels cheaper than the rest of the world, then why doesn't the world go to China to get their panels?



    ME
    It's not so much a case of "You got what you paid for", as it is a matter of "You DIDN'T get what you DIDN'T pay for, and you're NOT going to get what you thought you were in the way of comfort". Borrowed from Heatboy.
  • Paul Pollets
    Paul Pollets Member Posts: 3,415
    Tariffs

    Is 'cheaper' better? I'd prefer to buy product where the workers are paid a decent living wage and benefits. The reason product costs so little is the Chinese labor rate. That will change.
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    and don't forget

    huge subsidies to solar manufacturers by the Chinese government in the form of low interest loans and free (or nearly so) land for factories.
  • VictoriaEnergy
    VictoriaEnergy Member Posts: 126
    Chinese Solar Products

    I've always thought purchasing Chinese Solar Products as an oxy-moronic choice to make.   Why are you buying solar products for in the first place?  If the environment, sustainability, or social responsibility is in the mix then shouldn't you rule them out?



    It appears the issue is related to PV panels and not thermal solar.
    Home Owners Please Note:





    You are receiving advice from some very skilled pros completely free of charge. One of the reasons I participate is to sharpen my own troubleshooting skills. So; did we get it right? I would be grateful if you extend this courtesy back by posting the final outcome of the issue you are inquiring about. Thanks
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    To the issue at hand,

    yes, but the Chinese also manufacture a high percentage of evacuated tube thermal collectors sold here.
  • Mark Eatherton
    Mark Eatherton Member Posts: 5,837
    If we're talking embodied energy...

    I doubt that anything built in N.A. is a whole lot more environmentally sound...



    Cradle to grave, the environmental impact HAS to be huge. How much energy was consumed in the production of the aluminum, copper and glass in a typical flat plate collector?



    Will the collector EVER recover those first environment impact costs?



    Love to see the study.



    ME
    It's not so much a case of "You got what you paid for", as it is a matter of "You DIDN'T get what you DIDN'T pay for, and you're NOT going to get what you thought you were in the way of comfort". Borrowed from Heatboy.
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    embodied energy

    Actually works out pretty well for PV http://www.energybulletin.net/node/17219
  • Kevin_in_Denver_2
    Kevin_in_Denver_2 Member Posts: 588
    edited May 2012
    Chinese Evac Tubes

    Labor costs are rising quickly in China, but that's not the only reason US manufacturing is on the rebound. http://www.economist.com/node/21549956



    Evacuated tube manufacturing has become highly automated. Therefore the labor content is small, so cheap labor doesn't matter.



    In addition, folks I've talked to about the issue complain that China's quality control is still bad enough to make it a real PIA to source there.



    But cheap evacuated tubes will only be produced in the US with a large investment, and proof that they have a cost/benefit advantage over conventional flat plates. And wouldn't that be ironic - here's a tidbit from an NREL report:





    "Production and use of evacuated tube collectors is growing worldwide; the nature of glass tube production favors high degrees of automation. In the late 1970’s, evacuated tube solar collectors were first developed by Corning Glass in upstate New York using their experience in borosilicate (Pyrex) glass manufacturing. Corning’s evacuated tube design was manufactured and marketed in the U.S. by both Owens-Illinois and General Electric until the mid-1980’s when oil prices fell, federal incentives ended, and the U.S. solar thermal market collapsed. Both Owens-Illinois and GE stopped making evacuated tube collectors in 1985 and left the solar thermal industry.



    "Corning’s evacuated tube tooling was supposedly transferred to a subsidiary in South Korea where it languished until the 1990’s. It was eventually adopted by Chinese manufacturers, who dominate the world evacuated tube collector manufacturing arena today. Outside of China, evacuated tube solar collectors are also manufactured in India and Europe. The five largest evacuated tube manufacturers in China produced more collector area than the all the 167 flat-plate collector manufacturers put together."











    We've been finding that they have some system design advantages (simplification) that may tip that balance: http://greenbuildingindenver.blogspot.com/2012/02/simplest-solar-system-ever.html
    Superinsulated Passive solar house, Buderus in floor backup heat by Mark Eatherton, 3KW grid-tied PV system, various solar thermal experiments
  • SWEI
    SWEI Member Posts: 7,356
    System Costs

    When the average supply house can sell a system which can be installed at a reasonable price by an average plumber, and will remain working long enough to keep that plumber in business. we will have broad adoption.  We still have a ways to go here in America.
  • Larry Weingarten
    Larry Weingarten Member Posts: 2,228
    A presentation...

    ...that was just given at the ACEEE Hot Water Forum in Berkeley CA talked about Chinese solar and what it costs vs US solar.  http://www.aceee.org/files/pdf/conferences/hwf/2012/6C-Goetzler-Final.pdf   Also here is a link to the presentations from the conference.  http://www.aceee.org/conferences/2012/hwf/program  There is LOTS of good info!



    Yours,  Larry
  • Kevin_in_Denver_2
    Kevin_in_Denver_2 Member Posts: 588
    Getting the ACEEE Link to Work

    The link to the presentations didn't work for me. But I clicked on "Conferences and Events", then "Past Conferences", then "ACEEE Hot Water Forums"
    Superinsulated Passive solar house, Buderus in floor backup heat by Mark Eatherton, 3KW grid-tied PV system, various solar thermal experiments
This discussion has been closed.