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First Solar, Sir Ratan Tata Trust Partner to Electrify Rural Communities in India

September 25, 2012

NEW DELHI and TEMPE, Ariz., Sept. 25, 2012 - First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ: FSLR) and Sir Ratan Tata Trust today announced plans to collaborate on a pilot project to provide safe drinking water and irrigation to rural communities in India's northern Uttarakhand state.

Many remote villages of the middle Himalayas lack basic infrastructure such as roads, health facilities, schools and electricity. In Uttarakhand, even many villages that are connected to the electrical grid receive only erratic electrical service. In the absence of electric pumps, collecting water from spring sources and carrying it to villages-a job that usually falls to women-can take three to four hours a day.

Through its charitable giving program, First Solar has joined forces with the Sir Ratan Tata Trust to develop a pilot project using First Solar's advanced, thin-film photovoltaic (PV) modules to help off-grid villages in the region receive a reliable supply of clean energy for essential needs such as safe drinking water and irrigation. The aim of the pilot project is to develop an integrated solution that is low-maintenance and simple for the communities to install, maintain and use.

The pilot project, which will be managed under the Trust's Central Himalayan programme (Himmotthan Pariyojana) by the Himmotthan Society, will consist of two solar PV power plants which will be built in the Chureddhar and Chham (Gunogi) districts, Tehri Garhwal, Uttarakhand. If successful, the pilot project could be replicated across hundreds of villages throughout India. Ganesh Neelam, Development Manager, Sir Ratan Tata Trust, welcomed the support and contribution of First Solar. "We thank First Solar for partnering with us for the installation of this system, which will help us meet our community development goals," he said.

Anant Naik, First Solar's Director of Public Affairs in India, said, "We welcome the opportunity to join with the Sir Ratan Tata Trust and the Himmotthan Society. They share our commitment to sustainable development, to harness solar energy to provide safe drinking water in order to improve the quality of life for rural households."

The Sir Ratan Tata Trust is one of India's oldest philanthropic organisations. For more than a century, it has provided grants and partnered with organizations that engage in innovative and sustainable initiatives and have the potential to make a visible difference. Sir Ratan Tata Trust's programme in Uttarakhand has focused on providing rural communities in the region with affordable, long-term solutions for livelihood enhancement and resource management. This pilot would complement on-going livelihood enhancement work by the Sir Ratan Tata Trust and field partners through community institutions.

First Solar will donate 100 modules to the pilot project, which will combine First Solar PV modules with water pumps to move water from spring sources into storage tanks in order to provide the village with a safe and convenient water supply. The project will benefit 65 households with a population of 530 individuals in the two villages.

About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar systems which use its advanced thin-film modules. The company's integrated power plant solutions deliver an economically attractive alternative to fossil-fuel electricity generation today. From raw material sourcing through end-of-life module collection and recycling, First Solar's renewable energy systems protect and enhance the environment. For more information about First Solar, please visit

For First Solar Investors
This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The forward-looking statements in this release do not constitute guarantees of future performance. Those statements involve a number of factors that could cause actual results to differ materially, including risks associated with the company's business involving the company's products, their development and distribution, economic and competitive factors and the company's key strategic relationships and other risks detailed in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. First Solar assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking information contained in this press release or with respect to the announcements described herein.


For First Solar - Genesis Burson-Marsteller
Aakash Aggarwal/Gitanjali Sabikhi
+91-97-1120-9240/+91-98-7370-0674 or

First Solar-USA
Ted Meyer
+1 (602) 427-3318

Alan Bernheimer
+1 (510) 625-7447

First Solar-Europe
Brandon Mitchener
+32 (2) 233-1113

First Solar Investors
David Brady
+1 (602) 414-9315

Ryan Ferguson
+1 (602) 414-9315

Ora Crossley
+1 (602) 414-9315

SOURCE: First Solar, Inc.

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