During an interview aired on Monday’s broadcast of NPR’s “Morning Edition,” Colorado Gov. Jared Polis (D) stated that the China tariffs announced by President Joe Biden will raise prices and harm the deployment of solar energy because “we need” Chinese solar panels “to provide clean, renewable energy to the people of Colorado.” And companies need the panels “to keep up with the energy transition.”

Polis said, “Tariffs are a regressive form of tax, and they hit consumers, especially something like solar panels, because, guess what? We all pay electricity bills. We all pay utility bills. This makes it more expensive for all of our utilities in this area…to be able to buy new power, which they need to keep up with the energy transition. So, it’s passed along directly to consumers. If there need to be national security tariffs around microchips and those things, I think we can look at that, because obviously there [are] geopolitical complexities with China, but it’s something that’s so core to consumer costs. If we’re serious about reducing inflation, we should be talking about reducing tariffs, not increasing tariffs.”

Polis also stated that “there’s no question it’ll slow down the deployment of solar energy, not just in Colorado, but across the country. China is a major producer. Yes, there’s supply coming online from Vietnam, there is some domestic supply, but there’s a backlog. It increases costs and decreases supply to add incredibly punitive tariffs and penalties and taxes to Chinese solar panels that we need to provide clean, renewable energy to the people of Colorado.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett