Getting relevant to one of the number of recognized Borg-assimilated (Ensign Lynch, Star Trek 1st Contact, look it up) probably tends to make me too sensitive to the concern of “domination” of industry that renewable/Cleantech advocates often express, but it is so clearly nonsense that it speaks volumes about the level of logic employed by Cleantech activists, specifically for solar energy.
Actually, it seems only yesterday that environmentalists lauded the capacity of establishing nations to leap-frog technologies and industrial phases, adopting the most present day, usually cleanest, tools and strategies. Dominance of these by industrialized nations was not regarded an obstacle in any way.
But now we have prominent advocates like Robert Kaufmann who inquire “Has China Won the U.S. Solar War?” or James Gentile, president of Study Corporation for Science Advancement, who notes, “’…the United States now looks most likely to depend on China to tap vitality from the sun.’ How do we explain that to our grandchildren?”
Genuinely? Driven a Toyota, lately? America had each and every benefit for domination of the car business, including abundant oil and iron assets, massive spaces that accommodated roads and mobility, and a robust entrepreneurial manufacturing sector. In fact, right after World War II, the Japanese government famously recommended its sector towards making an attempt to compete with the dominant America organizations.
In the actual world, dominance is transitory, not everlasting, and occasionally even fleeting. Request Finland, whose Nokia Nokia when was the world’s major mobile telephone producer. Or Apple Apple, whose dominance of the industry with its iphone was quickly challenged by Samsung.
Is it possible to produce a technology that other folks cannot copy? Possibly the most complex substances manufactured are medicines, but generics frequently threaten brand title drugs, being held at bay only by patent laws (and not usually).
Importantly, the main purpose that Chinese solar panel companies have a value benefit is apparently the low cost capital offered by various levels of government, not due to some technological leap or secret manufacturing strategies that others cannot duplicate. In effect, they “dominate” the sector only by subsidizing foreign buyers, as the US industry frequently declaims.
The next publish will deal with the issue of whether or not we should emulate other nations, like China, in pursuing Cleantech.