First Solar inks 5.4-GW multi-year deal to supply modules to Bp and Lightsource

First Solar's Series 6 PV modules. Image by: First Solar.

November 22 (Renewables Now) - First Solar Inc (NASDAQ:FLSR) has signed framework agreements to supply up to 5.4 GW of its thin-film solar PV modules to UK’s Lightsource Bp and its 50% co-owner Bp plc (LON:BP) for their projects in the United States.

The terms include firm multi-year orders for around 4.4 GW of modules, with options for an additional 1 GW, the US solar panel maker said in Monday. The quantities are expressed in direct current (DC).

According to First Solar, Lightsource Bp is set to procure up to 4.3 GW of modules for its utility-scale projects in the US. Bp will buy up to 1.1 GW for own projects that Lightsource is developing.

The UK oil-and-gas major acquired those projects in a push towards net zero and a target to grow its net developed renewable power capacity to 20 GW by 2025 and 50 GW by 2030, added First Solar.

Lightsource Bp and Bp plan to realise their solar projects in Arkansas, Kentucky, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas.

Under the agreement for firm orders, First Solar will deliver 1.55 GW of modules in 2023, 1.3 GW in 2024 and another batch of 1.55 GW in 2025.

Separately, First Solar also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore opportunities to source power from solar projects developed, owned and operated by Ligthsource Bp in Ohio. First Solar runs two solar panel factories in Ohio and is about to invest in a third manufacturing facility to eventually reach a total annual capacity of 6 GW in the US state.

The third factory is expected to open its gates in the first half of 2023.

“As we continue to grow and progress our 10GW development pipeline across America, in addition to our partner bp’s 9GWs, executing significant long-term procurement agreements with bankable, world class suppliers like First Solar enables us to deliver on our growth plans and industry-leading global target of 25GW of solar by 2025,” Kevin Smith, chief executive officer, Americas, Lightsource bp, said of the new agreement. “It also translates into competitively priced electricity for our customers.”

“The US solar industry is at an important inflection point where it must continue the charge towards delivering 45% of our country’s electricity by 2050 while addressing the risks and uncertainty posed by increasingly volatile solar panel production, pricing, and supply,” added Georges Antoun, chief commercial officer, First Solar.

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