Tempe, AZ And Houston, TX (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) - First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced that it had signed a 15-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Dow, Inc. (NYSE: DOW) for its Gulf Coast operations. Dow’s Texas Operations is the largest petrochemical site in the western hemisphere. First Solar had previously disclosed the execution of the PPA without identifying the offtaker.
Under the agreement, First Solar will supply Dow with renewable energy from 75 percent of its 200-megawatt (MW)AC Horizon Solar project in Frio County, Texas. The project will utilize First Solar’s high-performance, eco-efficient Series 6 photovoltaic (PV) modules, designed and developed at the Company’s research and development (R&D) centers in California and Ohio. The Series 6 modules that will power the project utilize a range of advanced technologies, including ENGAGE™ PV Polyolefin Elastomers by Dow, which are used as encapsulant films to enhance the module’s performance and efficiency.
“Dow and First Solar share a common vision for a more sustainable planet and a long history of partnership,” said Edward Stones, Dow’s global business director for Energy and Climate Change. “Multiple raw materials, components, and derivative products produced by Dow contribute to the reliability and sustainability of First Solar’s module technology, including ENGAGE PV polyolefin elastomers. Now we are putting that technology to work in helping to power our operations in Texas and to reach Dow’s 2025 Sustainability Goal of obtaining 750 megawatts of our power demand from renewable sources.”
With up to six times lower carbon footprint and 24 times lower water impact than conventional crystalline silicon PV panels on a life cycle basis, the module delivers a superior environmental profile and the lowest carbon solar electricity available. In addition to having the lowest water footprint in the solar industry, First Solar has reduced its manufacturing water intensity per watt produced by 64 percent since 2009. One of the ways First Solar saves water is by recycling rejected water from a purification system back into a raw water tank. This has helped the company save more than 400 million liters of water since 2018, which is equivalent to 160 Olympic-sized swimming pools.
“With 123 years of history and a range of products that touches virtually every aspect of our lives, Dow helps define the image of American innovation on the world stage. As America’s solar company, we’re proud to support Dow’s renewable energy objectives with technology designed and developed in the United States,” said Karl Brutsaert, senior director, Corporate Renewables, First Solar. “Dow reinforces its longstanding commitment to sustainability by sourcing energy produced by the PV technology with the lowest carbon and water footprints available today. Importantly, the agreement also enables the addition of resilient, reliable solar capacity to our nation’s electricity grid.”
The portion of the solar facility covered by the PPA will generate enough electricity to power up to 25,000 average Texas homes, while displacing 147,000 metric tons of CO2 annually, equivalent to planting 2.4 million trees per year. The project will create approximately 350 jobs at the peak of construction and is also expected to bring benefits to local businesses.
First Solar recently expanded its manufacturing capacity to meet the increasing demand for Series 6 modules, starting production at its new module manufacturing facility in Lake Township, Ohio, in October 2019. The Company recently celebrated two decades since its founding in 1999, and 25GWDC of PV modules shipped, making it the only American solar module manufacturing company to achieve this milestone.
About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar solutions, which use its advanced module and system technology. The company’s integrated power plant solutions deliver an economically attractive alternative to fossil-fuel electricity generation today. From raw material sourcing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar’s renewable energy solutions protect and enhance the environment. For more information about First Solar, please visit www.firstsolar.com.
Dow (NYSE: DOW) combines global breadth, asset integration and scale, focused innovation and leading business positions to achieve profitable growth. The Company’s ambition is to become the most innovative, customer centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company. Dow’s portfolio of plastics, industrial intermediates, coatings and silicones businesses delivers a broad range of differentiated science-based products and solutions for its customers in high-growth market segments, such as packaging, infrastructure and consumer care. Dow operates 109 manufacturing sites in 31 countries and employs approximately 36,500 people. Dow delivered sales of approximately $43 billion in 2019. References to Dow or the Company mean Dow Inc. and its subsidiaries. For more information, please visit www.dow.com or follow @DowNewsroom on Twitter.
For First Solar Investors
This release contains 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 First Solar’s entry into a 15-year PPA for 75 percent of the capacity of the 200MWAC Horizon Solar project. 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 our current expectations and our 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. We undertake 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 our 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 Conditions 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.
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