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Tariffs on solar panels would cripple Nevada industry

Your Sept. 21 editorial took a swipe at solar power. That’s not unusual. The Review-Journal would power its printing presses with dirty coal if it could. But the editorial did so while examining the argument on whether to slap trade tariffs on the import of photovoltaic panels from overseas. That move would cripple Nevada’s booming solar-panel installation industry.

As of last year, there were almost 8,500 Nevada jobs in solar power, far more than in fossil fuels. As many as 2,000 would be lost just in our state if the government slaps penalties on imported solar panels. While this would help out the RJ’s pals in the fossil-fuel industry, it wouldn’t be good for Nevada. We would be forced to import more fossil fuels from out-of-state. We already trade cash (to the tune of more than a half-billion dollars every year) and jobs for dirty, imported fossil fuels. Many of us, from Gov. Brian Sandoval on down, would prefer to harvest the abundant clean energy shining down on our state.

Of course, the newspaper takes a shot at so-called “subsidies,” or incentives, that are helping to develop this dynamic new industry and provide good jobs in clean solar energy. Somehow, though, the editorial forgot to mention the billions of dollars in subsidies, including public land recently turned over to fossil-fuel miners for $2 an acre, that taxpayers give every year to oil and coal companies.

Let’s do a favor to new generations of Nevada workers and kids who deserve clean air: Say “no” to tariffs on solar technology, say “no” to dirty fossil fuels and say “yes” to clean solar energy.

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