$6 billion US solar consortium launched

A group of US power producers have formed a consortium to spend some $6 billion to support expansion of the domestic solar supply chain.

AES Corporation has joined Clearway Energy Group, Cypress Creek Renewables and DE Shaw Renewable Investments to form the US Solar Buyer Consortium in an effort to address current supply chain issues.

The consortium said will invest $6 billion as it seeks solar panel manufacturers in a long-term strategic plan to supply up to 7 GW of solar modules per year from 2024.

“With our large and growing pipeline of solar projects, AES is fully committed to accelerating America’s transition to clean energy,” said Andrés Gluski, AES president and CEO. 

“Some of America’s top solar developers have come together to do our part to help attract investments into US solar manufacturing. It is crucial, however, that the US Government creates a realistic, long-term policy framework that supports onshoring more of our solar panel supply chain without unnecessarily disrupting the growth and success of our sector.”

With the policies in place to facilitate continued growth, the consortium suggested that the US solar industry has the potential to provide 40% of the nation’s energy and employ as many as 1.5 million people by 2035.

The United States as a whole installed about 27 GW of utility-scale wind and solar capacity last year, federal data shows.  

The US Bureau of Land Management expects federal approvals to increase as it works to meet a Congressional mandate for 25 GW of additional wind and solar capacity by 2025, enough to power about 4.75 million homes. 

It expects approvals for more than 30 GW of wind, solar and geothermal capacity between fiscal 2022 and 2025.

Earlier this month, US President Joe Biden waived tariffs on solar panels from four Southeast Asian nations for two years and invoked the Defense Production Act to spur solar panel manufacturing at home.