AES Corporation leads development of new US Solar Buyer Consortium

Published on June 23, 2022 by Dave Kovaleski

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A coalition led by The AES Corporation has formed the US Solar Buyer Consortium to help expand the domestic solar supply chain.

The consortium – which also includes Clearway Energy Group, Cypress Creek Renewables, and D. E. Shaw Renewable Investments (DESRI) — will encourage a stable, domestic supply chain for solar modules. It issued a request for proposals (RFP) to search for manufacturers who can commit to a long-term strategic partnership to supply up to 7 GW of solar modules per year starting from 2024.

“The Consortium has a large and growing pipeline of solar projects in the United States, and we are committed to supporting America’s clean energy transition,” AES President and CEO Andrés Gluski said. “We’re working together with customers of all kinds to decarbonize their operations and the grid.”

The Biden administration recently announced a 24-month bridge for certain solar imports and other actions to support domestic manufacturing. While these are a step toward addressing supply chain challenges, the consortium recognizes that more needs to be done to build upon the industry’s progress.

“Our group of companies comprise industry leaders that are committed to delivering cost-effective, renewable power for our customers. Our joint commitment to procure at this scale can provide the certainty suppliers need to ramp up capacity and overcome current supply chain constraints,” David Zwillinger, DESRI’s CEO, said.

Consortium officials said increasing solar energy deployment is essential to achieving net-zero emissions by 2050 and limiting global temperature rise to 1.5o C.

“Solar provides low-cost clean energy, builds resiliency into the grid, and is vital in addressing the climate crisis,” Sarah Slusser, CEO of Cypress Creek Renewables, said. “We are proud to advance our country’s important decarbonization and clean energy goals and American manufacturing through the support provided by this consortium.”

Craig Cornelius, CEO of Clearway Energy Group, concurred.

“With legislation pending before Congress, policymakers can scale our domestic manufacturing workforce and restore our country’s legacy as a manufacturing leader. We appreciate the Biden administration’s commitment to invest in American workers and urge lawmakers to seize this opportunity,” Cornelius said.