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First Solar Issues 2022 Sustainability Report Showcasing Continued Progress on Environmental, Social, and Governance Metrics

July 26, 2022
Reports lower greenhouse gas emissions, manufacturing energy, water and waste intensity

TEMPE, Ariz., July 26, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- First Solar, Inc. (Nasdaq: FSLR) today announced that it has issued its 2022 Sustainability Report highlighting its continued, industry-leading environmental, social, and governance (ESG) progress. The only US-headquartered company among the world’s ten largest solar manufacturers, First Solar’s responsibly produced photovoltaic (PV) solar modules have the lowest carbon and water footprint and fastest energy payback time of any commercially available PV technology today.

“By placing Responsible Solar at the heart of our business and investing in innovation and scale, First Solar is an example of how solar can be competitive without compromising on principles and purpose,” said Mark Widmar, chief executive officer, First Solar. “We have consistently demonstrated that the solar-at-any-cost approach, which turns a blind eye to human and environmental costs of PV manufacturing, does not have to be the norm and that Responsible Solar is now a competitive differentiator.”

Highlights in First Solar’s 2022 Sustainability Report include:

  • A 13% year-on-year reduction in greenhouse gas emissions intensity. The company remains on track to achieve its science-based target of reducing its absolute scope 1 and scope 2 greenhouse gas emissions, from a 2008 baseline, by 34% by 2028 and net-zero emissions by 2050 in line with limiting global temperatures to 1.5 degrees Celsius.
  • An 8% year-on-year reduction in manufacturing energy intensity and a cumulative reduction in manufacturing energy intensity per watt by 65% since 2009. First Solar’s manufacturing energy intensity includes all processes, from the beginning of its manufacturing process to finished module. The company set a target to improve global energy efficiency per watt produced by 74% by 2028, from a 2009 baseline.
  • A 32% year-on-year reduction in manufacturing water intensity and a 78% reduction since 2009. Water recycling initiatives saved more than 268 million liters of water in 2021. After surpassing a previous water intensity target seven years early, First Solar set a new target of an 87% reduction in water intensity per watt compared to its 2009 baseline.
  • An 8% year-on-year reduction in manufacturing waste intensity and a 55% reduction since 2012.
  • A 4% increase in women in management positions compared to 2020. First Solar’s Board of Directors is 33% diverse and the company was recognized as a “3+ company” by 50/50 Women on Boards for having at least three women serve on its Board.

Earlier this year, First Solar announced that its 2.7 gigawatt (GW)DC vertically integrated manufacturing complex in Ohio has achieved Platinum status in the Responsible Business Alliance’s (RBA) Validated Audit Process (VAP), providing further validation to customers that they are working with a responsible partner. Platinum is the highest possible rating awarded on completion of a full VAP, which is considered the leading standard for onsite compliance verification and effective, shareable social and environmental audits across industries.

First Solar’s Northwest Ohio footprint is the Western Hemisphere’s largest solar manufacturing complex. The company is investing $680 million in building a third factory that will expand the complex by an annual capacity of 3.3 GW. The new facility is expected to be commissioned in the first half of 2023 and when fully operational will scale the company’s Ohio footprint to a total annual capacity of 6 GW, which is believed to make it the largest fully vertically integrated solar manufacturing complex outside of China.

In addition to its Ohio manufacturing facilities, First Solar also operates factories in Vietnam and Malaysia, and is building a new 3.3 GW factory in India that is expected to be commissioned in the second half of 2023. With First Solar’s expansion in the United States and India and optimization of its existing fleet, the company anticipates that its nameplate manufacturing capacity will double to 16 GW in 2024.

To download a copy of First Solar’s 2021 report, please visit www.firstsolar.com/responsiblesolar.

About First Solar, Inc.
First Solar is a leading American solar technology company and global provider of responsibly produced eco-efficient solar modules advancing the fight against climate change. Developed at R&D labs in California and Ohio, the company’s advanced thin film photovoltaic (PV) modules represent the next generation of solar technologies, providing a competitive, high-performance, lower-carbon alternative to conventional crystalline silicon PV panels. From raw material sourcing and manufacturing through end-of-life module recycling, First Solar’s approach to technology embodies sustainability and a responsibility towards people and the planet. For more information, please visit www.firstsolar.com.

For First Solar Investors
This release contains forward-looking statements which are made pursuant to safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, statements concerning (1) emissions, energy intensity, energy efficiency, water intensity, manufacturing waste intensity, and other environmental targets as well as other ESG-related metrics; (2) First Solar’s plans to establish new factories in the United States and India and the expected capacities of those factories; and (3) when those factories are expected to be commissioned and First Solar’s resulting Northwest Ohio and global manufacturing capacity. These forward-looking statements are often characterized by the use of words such as “estimate,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “intend,” “seek,” “believe,” “forecast,” “foresee,” “likely,” “may,” “should,” “goal,” “target,” “might,” “will,” “could,” “predict,” “continue” and the negative or plural of these words and other comparable terminology. The standards of measurement and performance referenced in this press release are developing and based on assumptions, and no assurance can be given that any metric, target, plan, initiative, projection, goal, commitment, expectation, or prospect set forth in this press release can or will be achieved. Forward-looking statements are only predictions based on our current expectations and our projections about future events and therefore speak only as of the date of this release. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements. We undertake no obligation to update any of these forward-looking statements for any reason, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise. These forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause our actual results, levels of activity, performance, or achievements to differ materially from those expressed or implied by these statements. These factors include, but are not limited to, the matters discussed under the captions “Risk Factors” and “Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” of our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and our subsequently filed Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, as supplemented by our other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission.  

Contacts
First Solar Media
media@firstsolar.com

First Solar Investor Relations
investor@firstsolar.com

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First Solar Issues 2022 Sustainability Report Showcasing Continued Progress on Environmental, Social, and Governance Metrics

First Solar, Inc. today announced that it has issued its 2022 Sustainability Report highlighting its continued, industry-leading environmental, social, and governance (ESG) progress.
First Solar Issues 2022 Sustainability Report Showcasing Continued Progress on Environmental, Social, and Governance Metrics

The only US-headquartered company among the world’s ten largest solar manufacturers, First Solar’s responsibly produced photovoltaic (PV) solar modules have the lowest carbon and water footprint and fastest energy payback time of any commercially available PV technology today.
Source: First Solar, Inc.
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