We’ve heard a lot about Solyndra, a solar panel maker that went bankrupt despite lots of federal subsidies. But on Wednesday, a solar installation company and one of the country’s biggest banks announced a billion-dollar project to put solar systems on the roofs of military housing. And they’re doing it without the kind of federal help Solyndra got.
When SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive came up with a plan to put solar on the rooftops of military housing around the country, he was sure he’d need federal backing to get loans for such a big project.
But after his company and the Department of Energy missed a deadline to get that help, SolarCity and its lender, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, didn’t give up.
Now they’re announcing a deal to install solar systems on up to 120,000 military homes.
“It will be the largest residential deployment of solar in American history,” says Rive.
Phoenix Solar AG (ISIN DE000A0BVU93), a leading photovoltaic system integrator
listed in Prime Standard of the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, today announced, that the US subsidiary of the company, Phoenix Solar Inc., built a strategic alliance with Silicon Ranch Corporation to develop and construct solar photovoltaic power plants in Tennessee and the Southeast. The companies said their first 1.4 megawatt project in the city of Pulaski, Tennessee will be the largest privately owned solar installation in the state. Phoenix Solar, with support from Chapel Electric, has begun construction on the Pulaski solar plant. Phoenix Solar will also provide long-term Operation and Maintenance support to monitor and optimize the plant’s ongoing energy production.
Tennessee’s state government may not being doing a lot in the way of offeringincentives for its residents and small businesses to install renewable energy systems, but the Volunteer State’s economy is benefiting from growing use of solar power nonetheless.
A worker passes solar panels at the West Tennessee Solar Farm, which sits on 200 acres of land adjacent to Interstate 40 in Haywood County. (Photo: Lance Murphey)
The president of the Chattanooga, Tenn., company building the West Tennessee Solar Project in Haywood County says Tennessee has a lot of so far unrealized potential for large utility scale solar arrays. And Ben Fischer of Signal Energy calls the economic development potential of the large arrays “essentially manufacturing without a roof.” “Not only has the technology improved, the cost has really come down in just the equipment,” Fischer said. “The installation methods and the ways in which they achieve economies of scale on large-scale projects has made us more cost effective as well.”
Over the next five years, India will become an anchor of global solar demand, installing more than 9 GW between 2011 and 2016, according to a new report, The India Solar Market: Strategy, Players, and Opportunities from GTM Research and BRIDGE TO INDIA. The market’s gigawatt-scale emergence will be spurred by the maturing National Solar Mission (NSM) and a collection of state-level incentives, as well as an influx of expertise from global solar players entering India.