First Solar and EDP Renewables sign 1.8GW US module supply deal

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EDP Renewables’ 20MW Cameron Solar Park in South Carolina. Image: EDP Renewables via Twitter.

Portuguese utility EDP Renewables has inked a 1.8GW supply deal with US PV module manufacturer First Solar to power its US projects through 2028.

First Solar will supply its US-made thin film PV modules to EDP Renewables’ North American arm for the next five years to support the Portuguese company’s plans to add 4.8GW of solar capacity in North America through 2026. The company currently has 1.6GW of solar PV under construction in the US, with 475MW already operational.

Long-term partnerships like these have been in focus of late as a way for companies to secure their solar supply chains from issues around import tariffs and the detainments facing modules suspected of being produced using forced labour in Xinjiang province. Last year the US detained 2GW of imported solar modules at customs under the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act.

“We welcome EDP Renewables’ decision to power its projects with our technology and look forward to supporting its growth in the US and, potentially, beyond,” said Mark Widmar, chief executive officer, First Solar.

“EDP Renewables joins a growing roster of large, sophisticated developers choosing long-term pricing and supply certainty, and responsibly produced solar modules by powering their projects with First Solar’s technology. This validates the value that our customers place in our differentiation, not just in technology but our way of doing business.”

First Solar has made a number of large supply deals with developers of late. In the first week of March it announced a 2GW partnership with Origis Energy for its Series 6 and Series 7 plus modules and a 2.6GW deal with Savion. Two of its highest-profile partnerships were expanded in February, as Silicon Ranch and Lightsource bp signed on for another 1.5GW and 4GW respectively.

2022 was a red-letter year in terms of supply for the company, as it recorded 48.3GW of module bookings, an 18GW increase from the year before. Financially, things were more mixed as warnings of a ‘challenging’ 2022 turned out to be true.

Last month EDP Renewables unveiled its US$26 billion investment plan through 2026, with the majority of plans and financing focused on North America and Europe. 40% of the company’s additions over the period are set to be utility-scale solar PV.

27 June 2023

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