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Chinese company to invest $2.5b in world’s largest solar panel factory

China’s GCL System Integration Technology Co. has announced plans to build the world’s largest solar panel manufacturing plant, according to Bloomberg. The facility will cost over $2.5 billion USD and have capacity to meet half the world’s current solar demand.

The new plant will be located in Hefei province, roughly 150 miles west of Shanghai. There is currently no publicly-announced timeline for construction, but the company has announced that the plant will be designed to manufacture every component needed to build a complete solar panel.

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To be completed in several phases, the facility once fully completed will be able to produce 60 gigawatts (GW) of solar panels every year, which likely equates to well over 150 million panels. By comparison, one GW of power alone is enough to power over 100 million LED lightbulbs. The world’s current largest solar panel planet 16 GW capacity.

There is no doubt: this new plant will significantly boost humanity’s ability to produce solar panels quickly and cheaply. It’s yet another piece of evidence of the exponential growth of global solar markets and renewable energy more generally.

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Peter Schulte

Peter Schulte is the founder and editor of Kindling. Peter is also Senior Digital Engagement Associate for the Pacific Institute and the UN Global Compact's CEO Water Mandate, connecting businesses to sustainable water practices. Peter holds a B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies and a B.A. in Comparative Literature from University of California, Berkeley, and an M.B.A. in Sustainable Systems from Pinchot University. He lives in Bellingham, WA, USA with his wife, son, and cat.

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