Sunday Dec 04, 2022

The Inflation Reduction Act passes, and Dalton’s Qcells is ready to see “green” energy – WDEF News 12

Qcells, a solar panel company based in Dalton, projects job and economic growth now that the bill passes both the Senate and House chambers

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) – The Inflation Reduction Act is supposed to help drive down the costs of products you and I buy everyday.

News 12 learned a provision inside the bill is going to help northwest Georgia even more.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi struck the gavel to officially adopt the Inflation Reduction Act Friday afternoon. Cheers were heard in the House chamber.

The Act includes several smaller bills which should help American businesses and citizens reduce costs and prices of products.

One of those is the Solar Energy Manufacturing for America Act. It provides tax credits for the production of solar panels, cells, and products that go into them.

For a local company like Qcells, it’s a win for the business, and it’s also a win for anyone looking for a job there.

The director of marketing and public affairs for Qcells, Scott Moskowitz, agrees. “We’re optimistic and hopeful that we’ll be able to expand further. And, really, this bill, what it’s going to do, is to really supercharge this industry, both in Georgia and around the United States. So, yes, the opportunity for job growth in this sector is pretty high.”

“Don’t bring me $14 or $15 an hour jobs. We have all that we need of those already. I need those $18, $19, $20 an hour jobs and that’s what they’re providing. And we’re excited to see them open. It seems like the timing’s really going to work out well with the expanded Solar ITC (Investment Tax Credit),” says Whitfield County Commission Chairman Jevin Jensen.

Job growth aside, a lot of parts that go into solar panels and cells are made abroad. This bill would help businesses that make those parts here in America.

Moskowitz: “The big issue with this industry is that it’s generally relied on imported products. This bill that Senator Ossoff and Senator Warnock have championed, the Solar Manufacturing for America Act, it will hopefully pass the House today … helps to improve our energy security. You might not think that when you think of solar panels, but, again, this is a critical industry that really helps to power the United States electric grid, and it will no longer be totally dependent on imported products.”

Qcells says there is a possibility the company will expand further beyond Dalton. With a ready-made workforce in Chattanooga and Atlanta, Qcells expects to fill 250 positions quickly.

Moskowitz: “There’s opportunities for everyone. Starting salaries in manufacturing tend to be generally pretty good, and they grow over time as folks gain more experience. And, yeah, we’re optimistic that we’ll have more opportunities for folks to come in the years ahead.”

The bill will be on the President’s desk Monday morning to sign into law.


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