Applied Materials is pleased to be recognized once again for our commitment to green energy. In the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s recent Green Power Partnership report, Applied ranked no. 15 on the list of the Top 20 Tech and Telecom companies and no. 35 on the Fortune 500 list.
As I’m caught up in Olympic fever at the moment, this feels like winning a medal!
India’s solar industry is finally taking off, but before it can make a meaningful contribution to the country’s growing power demands, many hurdles must still be overcome say experts and business leaders in the field.
In order to remain competitive in the global solar market and compete with countries like China and others, Indian manufactures will need to scale up and quickly. The market is there and booming, but manufacturers need capacities of 300-1,000 MW to remain competitive.
Last year, the Japanese government announced the creation of a national feed-in tariff (FiT) for solar, joining Germany and China in creating robust public policy to drive deployment of renewable energy. The program is set to launch on July 1, 2012 and solar is regarded as one of the brightest spots in the Japanese recovery from the tsunami.
The new program will guarantee payment of 40 Yen/kWh ($0.50) for solar energy produced by projects >10kw (non-residential) and 42 Yen/kWh ($0.53) for energy from projects <10kw (residential) for twenty and ten years, respectively. Today, installed system prices in Japan far exceed global norms – 2011 system costs averaged ~$6.25/w reflecting a high cost of regulation, grid connection, land, labor and construction costs in Japan as well as a module supply largely dominated by higher priced domestic manufacturers. Solar panel prices in 2011 ranged from 150-200Yen/watt ($1.90-2.70/w) which is almost twice what installers in the U.S. pay.
At the expo, Applied Materials announced a wafering deal that was recently signed with Birla Surya Ltd., a venture of the Yash Birla Group to develop the first ever Wafering and Cell manufacturing facility in Satara, Maharashtra. Additionally, company executives met with various potential customers and gave remarks.
Ten U.S. Senators recently visited Applied Materials' Solar Technology Center in Xi’an, China. The delegation’s mission was to learn more about renewable energy markets, manufacturing and projects in China as well as to observe U.S. investment in China.
The delegation included Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Assistant Majority Leader Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Democratic Caucus Chairman Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.) and Michael Bennet (D-Colo.)
Applied Materials recently hosted a delegation from the Chungbuk Province, Korea, that included its Governor, Mr. Si-Jong Lee and its Ambassador and International Advisor, Mr. Dong-Hwan Choi.
This visit was part of the Governor's official trip to the United States that also included stops in New York, Washington DC, and Los Angeles. The purpose of the trip was to promote US-Korea global investments and local industry, focusing primarily on the solar and bio-technology industries.
The delegation included the Governor's staff, Korea industry executives, and representatives from Korea Trade Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA) which organized the trip.
While at Applied Materials the group met with company executives including Chris Bowers, group vice president, Corporate Initiatives and Charlie Pappis, group vice president and general manager, Applied Global Services, to discuss Applied Materials’ technology and presence in Korea as well as investment opportunities in the Chungbuk Province. Additionally, the delegation received a company overview and tour of the Maydan Technology Center – a state of the art semiconductor R&D facility.
Already the country’s leading producer of oil and gas and wind energy, Texas has an opportunity to take the lead in generating solar energy too. It’s the perfect triple play. Texas has more sun than any other state, ample land resources for large scale and distributed solar installations, and a tremendous need for domestic energy generation. Solar is an ideal solution and the market is growing exponentially in markets where a favorable regulatory scheme exists. So how can we jump start this industry in Texas?
Some positive signals from Washington this week: President Obama has rolled out a new strategy to develop a cleaner and more diversified energy portfolio.
In a speech at Georgetown University, President Obama called for reducing oil imports by at least one-third by 2025 – through improved fuel economy standards, energy efficiency and alternative forms of energy, such as solar, wind, biofuels and natural gas.
The President also built on his State of the Union speech with renewed calls for cleaner electricity generation, and a goal of requiring that 80% of electricity come from cleaner sources by 2035. Applied Materials applauds President Obama for his continued commitment to fostering the nation’s clean technology industry – and strongly support a plan for a clean energy standard that fosters solar deployment. We agree that renewable energy and clean technology is the key to our country’s future competitiveness.
California's pioneering 33% Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) bill, authored by state Sen. Joe Simitian, D-Palo Alto, passed the California Assembly yesterday, sending a measure to Governor Brown’s desk – which he is expected to sign. The new standard will increase the state’s renewable portfolio standard to 33% by 2020.
Italy is faced with three very important considerations in determining how to power the nation: Very modest domestic energy resources (it imports 87% of its electricity), resulting high electricity prices and abundance of sunlight. Consequently, over the last few years the Italian government has instituted a series of policies to promote solar photovoltaic (PV) deployment. Growing from just 60MW in 2007, Italy installed almost 2GW of solar PV last year - making it the second largest market in the world.