In response to SolarWorld Chairman Frank Asbeck’s letter, Jigar Shah, President of the Coalition for Affordable Solar Energy (CASE) made a statement to President Obama to express his concerns of U.S.’s solar industry. Shah believes that solar industry is now “in danger due to SolarWorld’s action.”
According to Shah’s statement, Frank Asbeck from SolarWorld wrote to President Barack Obama this week, warning that “the U.S. solar industry is in danger because of international trade.” CASE agrees that the industry is under threat, “but it’s entirely at the hands of Mr. Asbeck and his Germany-based company,” claimed Shah.
Last week, President Obama championed American solar jobs “which can’t be outsourced” because they are installation jobs which take place on America’s rooftops. In 2013, U.S. solar jobs grew at six times the national employment rate because of global demand to solar products and related services. The solar industry contributed nearly 20,000 new jobs to the country last year; only 100 of them were in manufacturing.
“Like the last effort from SolarWorld in 2012, there is no credible case that tariffs will lead to increased US solar panel manufacturing or employment,” wrote Shah in his response. “It’s critical to job growth in our country that we recognize where U.S. solar jobs are coming from, and what drives their growth. SolarWorld’s trade petition would destroy the demand for affordable solar which is creating tens of thousands of jobs per year.” To Shah and CASE, it is irresponsible and frankly contrary to American interests for a German company, says, SolarWorld, to suggest otherwise in a letter to the President of the United States.