First Solar will use the Waste Management Phoenix Open, as part of the PGA Tour, in Scotsdale, Arizona, US, to showcase its solar PV arrays to power the event, including the waste management hospitality tent at the 18th hole. The arrays are currently in use at the Paloma power plant which began producing clean electricity in October 2011 and will be used at First Solar's Agua Caliente project is currently under construction.
The company will have exclusive rights to the event as the only solar energy provider.
There will also be 60 waste management solar-powered compactors along the course to allow patrons to dispose of their food waste more efficiently (these machines hold five times the amount of waste as a traditional non-compacting bin, which reduces the trips needed to service them). The waste will be transported in trucks fuelled by compressed natural gas. Waste Management Phoenix Open claims these trucks burn cleaner than a standard diesel truck and therefore will reduce fleet emissions associated with transportation.
“We're excited to have First Solar as part of the Waste Management Phoenix Open and furthering the tournament's sustainability efforts,” said Alex Clark, 2012 Waste Management Phoenix Open Tournament chairman. “With First Solar powering the event, including the Waste Management Corporate tent, with green renewable energy, we move one step closer to becoming the 'Greenest' show on Grass.”
“First Solar believes in supporting the communities where we live and work and is proud to sponsor this year's Waste Management Phoenix Open and be part of its innovative sustainability initiatives,” said Ted Meyer, First Solar vice president of communications. “Fans at the TPC Scottsdale will have an opportunity to see the same First Solar technology that is deployed at the APS Paloma Power Plant in Gila Bend and the Agua Caliente project in Yuma County, which will be the largest solar PV power plant in the world when it's completed.”
The 2012 Waste Management Phoenix Open will be held at the TPC Scottsdale from January 30 to February 5, 2012. The year's edition will mark the 77th playing of the event (one of the five oldest events on the PGA Tour) and the third as the Waste Management Phoenix Open.