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IQE

10 February 2015

First Solar and Apple strike industry's largest power deal for commercial end-user

First Solar Inc of Tempe, AZ, USA, which makes thin-film photovoltaic modules based on cadmium telluride (CdTe) as well as providing engineering, procurement & construction (EPC) services, says that Apple has committed $848m for clean energy from its California Flats Solar Project in Monterey County, CA, USA. Apple will receive electricity from 130MWAC of the solar project under a 25-year power purchase agreement (PPA), the industry's largest agreement for providing energy to a commercial end-user.

"Apple is leading the way in addressing climate change by showing how large companies can serve their operations with 100% clean, renewable energy," says First Solar's chief commercial officer Joe Kishkill. "Apple's commitment was instrumental in making this project possible and will significantly increase the supply of solar power in California," he adds. "Over time, the renewable energy from California Flats will provide cost savings over alternative sources of energy as well as substantially lower environmental impact."

The 2900-acre California Flats Solar Project occupies 3% of a property owned by Hearst Corporation in Cholame, CA. Construction is expected to begin in mid-2015, and to be completed by the end of 2016. The output of the remaining 150MW of the project will be sold to Pacific Gas & Electric under a separate long-term PPA, and the project is fully subscribed between the Apple and PG&E PPAs.

In January, the Monterey County Planning Commission unanimously approved the California Flats Solar Project, sending the project to the Monterey County Board of Supervisors to consider final approval of the project.

Building on its proven record of developing, building and operating utility-scale solar power plants, First Solar has placed a strategic focus on directly providing large commercial and industrial customers with wholesale electricity through long-term agreements. The latest deal marks the first wholesale commercial and industrial PPA executed by First Solar.

Tags: First Solar Thin-film photovoltaic CdTe

Visit: www.firstsolar.com

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