News | January 4, 2024

First Solar Signs PPA With Cleantech Solar To Power India Manufacturing Facility

TEMPE, ARIZ. & CHENNAI, INDIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--

First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced that it has entered into a 15-year, captive Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with Cleantech Solar, a leading provider of renewable energy solutions to corporations in India and Southeast Asia. Under the agreement, Cleantech Solar will construct 150 megawatts (MW) of photovoltaic (PV) solar and 16.8 MW of wind-generating assets in Tamil Nadu, India, supplying approximately 7.3 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of clean electricity to First Solar’s new 3.3-gigawatt (GW) vertically integrated solar manufacturing facility, also located in Tamil Nadu.

When fully commissioned by the third quarter of 2024, the solar and wind generation assets are expected to provide up to 70% of the facility’s anticipated electricity needs. They are expected to displace almost 7,000 kilotons of CO2 emissions over the duration of the PPA. Furthermore, Cleantech Solar has agreed to procure 150 MW of advanced, India-made Series 7 thin film solar panels from First Solar, utilizing the modules to power the solar PV component of the PPA. The modules are expected to be delivered in the first half of 2024.

“Our new manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu sets a high benchmark for responsible and sustainable vertically integrated solar manufacturing, not just in India, but globally,” said Sujoy Ghosh, vice president and managing director, First Solar, India. “By powering our operations with clean, renewably-generated electricity, we are working to further reduce our environmental footprint, which is already the lowest in the industry.”

First Solar’s Tamil Nadu plant, located in an area of high baseline water stress, is believed to be the world’s first net-zero water withdrawal solar manufacturing facility. The facility is designed to minimize its impact on local water resources and will rely entirely on tertiary treated reverse osmosis water from the city's sewage treatment plant and have zero wastewater discharge. Additionally, the factory is home to India’s first photovoltaic (PV) solar recycling plant. The company pioneered high value solar recycling, which provides closed-loop semiconductor recovery for use in new modules, while also recovering other materials including aluminum, glass, and laminates.

First Solar’s responsibly produced, advanced thin film photovoltaic (PV) modules set industry benchmarks for quality, durability, reliability, design, and environmental performance. The company’s solar modules have the lowest carbon and water footprint of any commercially available PV module today, and it’s the first PV manufacturer to have its product included in the Electronic Product Environmental Assessment Tool (EPEAT) global registry for sustainable electronics.

“We are delighted to announce our strategic partnership with First Solar. This collaboration extends beyond powering First Solar's flagship manufacturing facility in India; it involves leveraging their advanced, ultra-low carbon thin film solar panels to energize our solar assets,” said Sachin Jain, chief executive officer, Cleantech Solar. “Cleantech has a substantial presence in the state of Tamil Nadu within the renewable energy sector, particularly in Wind and Solar. Our state-of-the-art solar and wind energy parks in the region play a pivotal role in delivering clean and cost-competitive power to our esteemed clients, including First Solar.”

Jain added, “This collaboration enables our partners’ efforts to diversify their energy sources, integrate renewable energy into their operations, and achieve a higher degree of stability and sustainability in their power supply. This partnership exemplifies our commitment to advancing sustainable energy solutions and reinforces our position as a key player in the renewable energy landscape. We look forward to a mutually beneficial relationship with First Solar, contributing to the growth and success of both organizations.”

The agreement is believed to be one of the largest intra-state PPAs in India and the projects being developed across Cleantech Solar’s renewable energy parks in Tamil Nadu are already providing solar, wind, and hybrid energy solutions to its corporate customers. With this latest agreement, Cleantech Solar’s total portfolio size in Tamil Nadu now stands at nearly 500 MW across operations and construction stages, and includes solar, wind and hybrid power projects.

About Cleantech Solar

Cleantech Solar is a pan-Asia supplier of renewable energy to corporates, combining the capabilities of a global player with responsiveness and agility. Headquartered in Singapore, Cleantech Solar has numerous solar and wind projects across India and Southeast Asia, covering approximately 1.2 GWp of assets in operations, construction and development stages. This includes installations in India, Singapore, Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. For information, please visit www.cleantechsolar.com.

About First Solar, Inc.

First Solar is a leading American solar technology company and global provider of responsibly produced eco-efficient solar modules advancing the fight against climate change. Developed at R&D labs in California and Ohio, the company’s advanced thin film PV modules represent the next generation of solar technologies, providing a competitive, high-performance, lower-carbon alternative to conventional crystalline silicon PV modules. From raw material sourcing and manufacturing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar’s approach to technology embodies sustainability and a responsibility towards people and the planet. For more information, please visit www.firstsolar.com.

For First Solar Investors

This press release contains various “forward-looking statements” which are made pursuant to safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements concerning 1) First Solar’s decision to enter into a 15-year, 170 megawatt (MW) annual Power Purchase Agreement with Cleantech Solar; 2) the expectation that Cleantech Solar will supply approximately 7.3 gigawatt-hours (GWh) of clean electricity to power First Solar’s new manufacturing facility in Chennai, India, covering 70% of the facility’s anticipated electricity needs; 3) that the solar and wind generation assets fully commissioned by the third quarter of 2024; 4) Cleantech Solar’s decision to procure 150 MW of advanced, India-made Series 7 thin film solar panels from First Solar, and its intent to utilize these panels to power assets that will supply energy to First Solar under the signed PPA. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as “estimate,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “believe,” “forecast,” “foresee,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “goal,” “target,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “predict,” “continue” and the negative or plural of these words and other comparable terminology. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on First Solar’s current expectations and First Solar’s projections about future events and therefore speak only as of the date of this release. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. First Solar undertakes no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause First Solar’s actual results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the matters discussed under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and our subsequently filed Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, as supplemented by our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.


Copyright Business Wire 2024