U.S. Senator Jon Ossoff from Georgia recently introduced the Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act to boost American solar manufacturing. The legislation is co-sponsored by Senators Reverend Raphael Warnock (D-GA), Michael Bennet (D-CO), and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI).
Sen. Ossoff hopes this legislation will boost the American solar industry to create American clean energy jobs, better compete with Chinese manufacturers, and support American energy independence. Although the language of the bill says it is for “solar manufacturing,” it is clear that this is for solar panel manufacturing specifically.
“We strongly support Senator Ossoff’s manufacturing proposal and commend his leadership on this critical topic,” said Abigail Ross Hopper, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). “This legislation is an important step for spurring domestic manufacturing across all key elements of the solar supply chain and we look forward to helping it advance through Congress. In support of Senator Ossoff’s proposal, we are today setting a target of 50 GW of annual domestic solar production capacity by 2030, including polysilicon, wafers, cells and modules, racking and trackers and inverters. It is time to seize the promise of American solar manufacturing.”
The Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act would provide tax credits for American manufacturers at every stage of the solar panel manufacturing supply chain, from production of polysilicon to solar cells to fully assembled solar modules.
The suggested credits (which would begin in 2022) include:
- A solar panel would receive a 7-cent/watt credit
- An integrated module (assuming that means modules with microinverters or power optimziers pre-attached) would receive an 11-cent/watt credit
- PV cells would receive a 4-cent/watt credit
- Silicon wafers would receive a $12 per square meter credit
- Solar-grade polysilicon would receive a $3 per kilogram credit
The credits would begin to phase out to 70% in 2029 and 35% in 2030 before ending completely in 2031.
Unsurprisingly, this Act is supported by Q CELLS, which has a 1.7-GW solar panel manufacturing facility in Ossoff’s home state of Georgia.
“This is exactly the kind of policy the United States needs to scale the solar manufacturing sector and compete on the world stage. This proposal would create tens of thousands of good-paying manufacturing jobs across America in places like our home of Dalton, Georgia,” said Scott Moskowitz, Director of Market Intelligence and Public Affairs at Hanwha Q CELLS North America. “Further, the Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act will help to diversify the entire solar supply chain, increasing the United States’ energy security while allowing us to competitively meet domestic and global solar energy demand. Solar is the future and Senators Ossoff, Warnock, Stabenow and Bennet are paving the way to help make Georgia and the United States a world leader in clean energy manufacturing. We look forward to working with him to turn this into law.”
The bill is also supported by Hemlock Semiconductors, LG Electronics USA, REC Silicon ASA, Wacker Polysilicon North America, Sunnova Energy International Inc., First Solar, Mission Solar, Leading Edge Equipment Technologies, Auxin Solar, Swift Solar, 1366 Technologies, Silfab Solar, Heliene, and the Ultra Low Carbon Solar Alliance.