While the solar industry is going through something of a rough patch in the United States, the sun still shines in other parts of the world – a strong indication that better days are ahead for this vital source of clean power.
Germany’s Solar Boom
Quick, off the top of your head: What is China’s biggest export?
Gym socks? iPods? Wal-Mart knick-knacks? Neo-colonial African infrastructure (e.g. bridges and ports in Congo)?
We’ll hypothesize here that China’s biggest export is deflation.
David Hunkar submits: Denmark is the one of the world leaders in producing electricity from wind. About 20% of the electricity produced in Denmark comes from wind power. Since the 1980s, the Danish government provided various incentives for the growth of this industry with the goal of reducing fossil fuel imports. As a results of these efforts, today Denmark is not only a world leader in wind power generation but also is a major exporter of wind power technology and expertise to other countries.
The big trade news of the day is that United Steelworkers union (USW) has filed a petition with the US government alleging that the Chinese government unfairly favors, through subsidies and other trade measures, its domestic manufacturers of "green" goods like solar panels and wind turbines. The petition was filed under a section of US trade law - Section 301 of the Trade Act of 1974 - that was once a strong protectionist weapon but has basically gone dormant since the advent of the World Trade Organization.