US solar consortium pledges US$6 billion to boost solar supply chain


US solar consortium pledges US$6 billion to boost solar supply chain


A newly established consortium of four American solar companies has committed to investing US$6 billion per year to purchase 6 GW to 7 GW of crystalline silicon solar modules, aiming to revive domestic solar manufacturing in the United States. 

The ‘US Solar Buyer Consortium,’ formed by AES, Clearway Energy Group, Cypress Creek Renewables and D.E. Shaw Renewable Investments, has launched a Request for Proposal (RFP) for qualified manufacturers that can commit to a long-term partnership to supply up to 7 GW of solar modules per year beginning from 2024. 

The consortium is established to foster a stable, domestic supply chain for solar modules in the US, according to AES, adding that onshoring a robust PV supply chain is critical to the US solar industry and has the potential to create hundreds of thousands of jobs across the country.

AES president and CEO Andrés Gluski remarked that the company is committed to supporting the country’s clean energy transition and the consortium has a significant and growing pipeline of solar projects in the US. The firm’s spokesperson then added that the goal of the consortium is to have all components made in America. 

While more polysilicon facilities are being developed in the US, manufacturing capacity levels are far below what is required to provide a wholly US-made solar supply chain large enough to serve the whole US solar market. In addition, prominent solar manufacturers have urged the government to enact tax breaks and other financial incentives to encourage domestic PV manufacturing.

The consortium announcement is only one step toward strengthening America’s solar supply chain, said Craig Cornelius, CEO of Clearway Energy Group, adding that they expect the policymakers boost the domestic manufacturing workforce and restore the country’s legacy as a manufacturing leader with legislation pending before Congress.

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