when solar panels became job killers
Russell Abney raised two children with solar energy. The 49-year-
Georgia Tech\'s old graduates have worked in Perrysburg, Ohio for ten years, a suburb of Toledo, and are highly paid as equipment engineers for the largest solar company in the United Statespanel maker.
On the other side of the world, gaosong boasts his solar success story.
He used to be an organic fruit retailer living in the dusty Chinese city of Wuhan. Four years ago, he installed solar panels on the roof and found that the solar panels were profitable, so he began to install them for others.
Last summer, he was installing solar energy with a team of 50 employees-
Install panel systems on nearly 100 roofs every month.
Then China shook the global solar industry.
Changed their lives.
\"Back in China, a small shock,\" said Frank Haugwitz, a long-term solar industry consultant in Beijing, \"could cause an avalanche in global prices.
Late last summer, Chinese officials began public discussions about cutting domestic solar subsidies. panel buyers. Mr.
Mr Gao finished his business and he fired half of the workers.
\"I have been working hard and have just made a good start,\" he said . \".
\"Now I have to start over. ”China’s solar-
Panel manufacturers have cut prices for more than a quarter to make up for losses, causing global prices to plummet.
Western companies find themselves unable to compete, cutting jobs from Germany to Michigan, to Texas, and even more.
Fort Perry included-where Mr.
Abney and about 450 other employees suddenly found themselves out of work.
\"Everything has collapsed in just a few months ,\"Abney said.
\"It\'s like death at home.
People are embarrassed to talk about it.
\"President Trump pressed Chinese President Xi Jinping on trade and other issues during his meeting this week on March --a-
Largo in Palm Beach, Florida.
He vowed to end what he called unfair business practices in China.
Many of his speeches involve the old-
The old chimney industry like steel
Even before the rise of China, jobs had disappeared.
But economists and business groups warn that China\'s industrial ambitions have entered a new, far-reachingreaching phase.
The Chinese government has strong financial resources and mature technology, and has formulated a comprehensive plan to get rid of dependence on foreign companies, aiming to become the dominant force in future industries such as renewable energy, big data and self-driving cars.
Solar energy has already happened.
There are two countries in China now.
The third largest solar energy in the world
The efficiency of its products to turn sunlight into electricity is getting closer to the panels produced by companies in the US, Germany and South Korea.
Because China has also bought half of the world\'s new solar panels, it now controls the market effectively.
For most of the past century, the ups and downs of the US economy may cause differences between Chilean copper miners and Malaysian rubber farmers in employment or poverty.
Now, China\'s policy changes and business decisions, once used by power brokers in Washington, New York and Detroit, have the same global impact.
The story of the rise of Chinese solar panels shows the great difficulties China has brought to him.
Trump, or any president of the United States.
Its size and speed
The growing economy allows it to redefine the industry with almost a dime. Its government-
Led\'s pursuit of dominance in key industries poses a direct challenge to leaders who usually leave business decisions to their own countries.
China is already the world\'s largest manufacturer and buyer of steel, cars and smartphones.
While it may not necessarily dominate these industries, its government departments are replicating this success with robots, chips and software --
Like solar energy.
Chinese panel manufacturers \"have capital, technology, and scale,\" said Chang haiyangyuan, chief executive of Grape Solar, a solar panel distributor based in Eugene.
Among US competitors, he said, \"they will beat them.
Before he became one of the most powerful companies in the solar industry, Liu Hanyuan began to raise fish.
He is the son of a farmer in southwest China.
In 1983, Liu sold some of his pigs and bought some fish for about $100.
Soon, he began selling more profitable fish feed and eventually entered the pig feed and duck feed industry.
Brand name Keli is the combination of the first and last Chinese characters in the famous paraphrasing of Karl Marx by Deng Xiaoping, the father of modern China: science and technology are the first productive forces. According to Mr.
Liu\'s authorized biography, who was initially criticized locally for his early acceptance of capitalism, responded that his fish feed was an improved product after Deng Xiaoping\'s motto.
He said at the time: \"When my business is big, I will build another layer for the laboratory.
\"The plan to switch to computer chips has not been successful, so by 2006, after controlling a company that produces polysilicon chemicals, he turned to solar technology, the crystalline raw material of solar panels.
The move proved lucky: China has just begun to work together to become a solar enterprise
In the next six years, Beijing has pushed the country
State-owned banks will provide at least $18 billion in low-interest loans
Interest rate of solar energy
Local governments are encouraged to subsidize them with cheap land.
China has more ideas than just leading solar exports: China\'s serious pollution problems and concerns that rising sea levels due to climate change could destroy its thriving coastal cities have led to the development of green technologies
At the same time, China has become a major player in wind power through similar policies.
With the help of China\'s solar energy
From 2007 to 2012, the power production capacity expanded more than ten times.
Top 10 solar cells now
Panel makers are Chinese, including the top two, and none of them a decade ago.
Mr. solar department.
Liu\'s company, Tongwei Group, which disclosed few financial details, is one of the fastest companies.
Expand industry participants.
This growth has forced many solar companies in the United States and Europe.
The panel manufacturer plunged into the retreat.
During President Barack Obama\'s first term, 24 of them filed for bankruptcy or cut operations, undermining optimism about clean energy at the time.
The United States and the European Union concluded in 2012 and 2013 that China\'s solar energy-
Panel manufacturers are charging government subsidies and dumping panels or selling them at prices below production and shipping costs.
Both sides imposed import restrictions.
Chinese manufacturers and officials have denied improper subsidies and dumping, but still so.
Several large Chinese manufacturers, which had been expanding too much and losing money for many years, then closed down.
But Western solar companies say Chinese banks still offer large loans to survivors despite low loans --
Recovery rates for large Chinese solar companies such as Suntech, Chaoli and LDK solar after default.
\"The main subsidy is huge, less-
Market loans in China
Having commercial banks to finance new capacity, as well as huge and sustained losses from Chinese companies, \"said Jurgen Stein, president of US operations at SolarWorld, a big panel maker in Germany.
Li Junfeng, China\'s top architect of renewable energy
Until his retirement from this responsibility in early January, energy policy said the West exaggerated the country\'s role in helping China\'s solar financing
\"The market can decide on its own,\" he said . \"
\"Good companies can make money, bad companies can\'t.
Like the entire Chinese solar industry, Tongwei\'s idea is even bigger. Mr.
Liu\'s company bought a huge solar energy.
In 2013, LDK Solar encountered serious financial difficulties at the panel manufacturing plant in central China.
Now, it plans to build 5 gigawatts of factories in Chinese cities in Chengdu and Hefei.
By contrast, the global market is only 77 gigawatts per year, compared with 139 gigawatts worldwide.
Liu was dismissive of many Western pioneer companies in solar technology, but lost their market share to China.
\"They are very jealous and can\'t keep up with the pace of China,\" he said.
\"From an environmental point of view, China\'s solar energy development is beneficial to the world. Solar-
Panel prices have fallen by nearly 90% over the past decade.
Many solar panels in U. S. backyard and solar power plants are made by Chinese companies.
But for the solar industry, China\'s expansion could mean lower prices and cuts in other countries.
\"I want to say that the solar industry is facing a new winter again,\" said Patrick puyani, chairman and chief executive of the French oil and gas giant Total, with a controlling stake in SunPower, an American solar company. panel maker.
China now wants to replicate the growth of its solar industry in other areas.
According to the China Manufacturing 2025 program, China hopes to achieve itself to a large extent.
In a long list of industries, including aircraft, seven years is enough.
Trains, computer chips and robots.
This plan echoes solar energy. panel and wind-
The turbine was built ten years ago, but the cheque book was bigger.
Making 2025 in China requires about $300 billion in financial support: cheap loans from countries
Access to investment funds for foreign technology and extensive research subsidies.
If successful, making 2025 in China will represent a fundamental shift in the way China deals with the world.
Initially, most of the industries that moved to China, such as shoes and clothing production, have left the United States anyway.
Heavy industries such as steel follow.
Although the change is profound
Some economists estimate that this figure is as high as 2.
From 1999 to 2011, 4 million jobs in the United States were lost to China, although others disagreed --
In areas such as automobiles, China has been trying to build a viable global competitor.
Business groups in the United States and Europe have warned that China\'s 2025 plan means broader Western companies will face the same government --
The support competition for the solar industry has changed.
\"These policies start with solar energy and now start to infect the upstream of the economy with 2025 made in China,\" Jeremie Waterman said . \", President of the China Center at the American Chamber of Commerce in Washington.
In the end, China did not cut subsidies for rooftop solar panels, but only slightly reduced large power companies --plant arrays.
But prices have barely rebounded from last year\'s slump. Mr.
Wuhan\'s high is a 37-year-
Old man with thin dark hair.
He says his business is not on the homeowner, but on the profit.
Thoughtful investors who use subsidies.
Investors will pay 3-
The homeowner system costs five times.
Homeowners only need to get enough power from the panels to power their homes.
Investors will sell the remaining electricity to the grid at a high government price. assisted price.
Although the government has not followed up, the suggestion that the government may cut subsidies has alarmed his investors.
So they stopped financing for further deals.
\"They are worried that they may have nothing next year,\" he said . \".
Recently, he hired four more employees to drum up sales, although the installation requirements a year ago were only a fraction of the demand.
Born in pensburg.
Abney lost his job at First Solar.
The US-based panel manufacturer has found a job in the automotive industry in the Toledo region, but has not succeeded.
Three weeks ago, he found a job at a building materials company in Pa Lancaster.
His daughter will go to college in the fall while his wife and son, now a high school freshman, will follow him to central Pennsylvania this summer.
\"This is the most difficult thing for him because we are pulling him out of high school and activities ,\"Abney said.
First Solar is struggling with technological advances and falling prices in China.
It fired workers in Perrysburg, in part because it decided not to produce the fifth series panels, which had limited improvements over the existing Fourth Series panels.
To better compete with Chinese producers, First Solar will wait for its lower pricecost, high-
The efficiency Series 6 panel will be put into production in 2018.
Finally, the first solar energy in Ariz Tempe.
1,600 layoffs worldwide
\"It\'s just a shocking factor when many families realize they don\'t have a job anymore,\" said Michael Olmsted, the Republican mayor of peresburg. Though Mr.
Abney started his new job with almost the same salary as he had before, and he said that some of his people were nervous during the days when the US was still ahead of solar power, when the first solar company is in this leadership position.
\"They are good for us,\" he said . \"
\"It\'s great when it lasts.