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Trump Will Make Key Decision On Future Of U.S. Solar Industry

President Donald Trump is set to decide whether to place tariffs on solar panels made overseas.

On Friday, federal regulators in Washington, D.C. ruled unanimously that a glut of global imports has hurt some U.S. manufacturers.

The Solar Energy Industries Association calls the International Trade Commission’s finding disappointing and warns the requested remedy could devastate businesses, costing nearly 90,000 jobs next year.

If the full requested tariff is granted, Midwest-based solar developer TJ Kanczuzewski, CEO of Inovateus Solar, said his company and others will lose jobs and have to rework their future growth plans.

“Potentially doubling the cost of solar panels really just hurts the United States and could help other countries. And so it makes us less competitive. This is not a good business move,” Kanczuzewski said.

But the two domestic manufacturers that brought the case - Suniva and SolarWorld - argue they can not compete with the flood of foreign imports, mostly from Asia, and that a trade protection would revive the industry.

Now the commission will start crafting a recommendation for Trump on what kind of tariff is best.

Will Stone grew up with the sounds of public radio. As a senior field correspondent, he strives to tell the same kind of powerful stories that got him into the business — whether that means trudging through some distant corner of the Sonoran Desert or uncovering an unknown injustice right down the street. Since joining the KJZZ newsroom in 2015, he has covered political scandals, fights over the future of energy, and efforts to care for some of Arizona’s most vulnerable communities. His pieces have also aired on national programs like Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Here & Now and Marketplace. Before coming to KJZZ, he reported for public radio stations in Nevada and Connecticut. Stone received his degree in English literature from Haverford College, where he also wrote about the arts and culture scene in Philadelphia. After graduating, he interned at NPR West in Culver City, California, where he learned from some of the network’s veteran reporters and editors. When he doesn’t have a mic in hand, Stone enjoys climbing mountains, running through his central Phoenix neighborhood and shamelessly promoting his cat, Barry.