First Solar Malaysia, Kulim High Tech Park

First Solar is a leading global provider of comprehensive photovoltaic (PV) solar energy solutions with more than 10 gigawatts (GW) installed worldwide. This installed capacity produces enough clean electricity annually to power 5 million households, save over 18 billion liters of water, displace 7 million metric tons of CO2 per year, and reduce other air pollutants by 89-98 percent.

First Solar Malaysia started its operation in 2008 and is the largest high-technology manufacturing site for First Solar’s advanced thin film PV modules. Construction is underway for the Kulim Module Assembly facility where the next generation of First Solar’s modules will be built.

The160-acre Kulim site employs over 4,000 local associates from the region and provides the Malaysian community with reliable high-tech jobs that span the entire manufacturing spectrum.

First Solar Malaysia is committed to manufacturing the industry’s best thin film PV modules while providing superior safety and security to associates. This site is certified in Quality, Environmental Management and Occupational Health and Safety. To ensure optimum working conditions for its associates, comprehensive environmental health and safety (EHS) audits are conducted regularly.

First Solar Malaysia has one of the largest installations of a grid-connected carpark solar PV system in Malaysia. A 486.72kWpdc (or 390kWpac) PV system consisting of 6,084 First Solar PV modules is connected to a 33kV grid system that generates approximately 2,000kWh/day or 60,000kWh/month. The design sets the tilt angle at 10º for good rain water runoff (self-cleaning). The renewable energy generated will replace carbon-intensive energy sources and significantly reduce global warming emissions.

This landmark site is also paving the way in environmental innovations and solutions by operating a full recycling facility. The recycling facility increases resource efficiency by recovering over 90 percent of glass and semiconductor materials, which will then be used in new module sand other products.

First Solar Malaysia site is a model facility for the manufacturing of safe and sustainable solar technology. The PV modules produced here will help First Solar maximize value and minimize risk to its customers and partners around the world.

Environmental Excellence

First Solar Malaysia has won the prestigious national 2014/2015 Prime Minister’s Hibiscus Award Exceptional Achievement, which recognizes environmental commitment, performance and an exemplary model for others to emulate. The site was also given the State Award for the best awardee in Kedah state, along with a Gold Award for the Special Project Award that showcased an environmental project on renewable resources.

The Prime Minister Hibiscus Award is an award to honor the contributions of companies which demonstrated their commitment toward environmental protection. Winners of the award are widely recognized by the public as role models in business and industry’s environmental performance and excellence.

Hibiscus Award entrants submit information for 15 categories, including Employee Participation, Environmental Accounting and Eco-Design. Companies that excel in all areas are considered for the award. By winning the 2014/2015 Prime Minister’s Hibiscus Award, First Solar has proven that we excel in all areas of environmental performance and excellence.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Tech Dome Penang – People of all ages can get an up-close look at how First Solar turns the sunlight into electricity thanks to the newly opened Tech Dome Penang science center. The center’s focus on increasing scientific literacy and showcasing the technology companies of Malaysia made it a perfect fit for First Solar to create an interactive exhibition.

First Solar donated the PV system, consisting of 40 modules, to educate the public on solar power and to promote the company as an important part of the region’s economy. Visitors can view real-time performance data while looking out onto the small array.

Al Fateh Mosque – On 15 January 2016, First Solar Kulim officially launched its 12kW solar energy system at the Al Fateh Mosque in Bandar Baharu, a township about 20 kilometer from Kulim facility. Kedah introduced the Kedah Green Agenda policy in October 2015 with an objective to promote green technology as a driver to accelerate the national economy and promote sustainable development. The 12kW solar energy system is part of the initiative taken by First Solar to support the Kedah Green Agenda through First Solar’s CSR efforts. It is the first project of its kind in the state.

The 12kW solar energy system is a joint program with Kedah state government. First Solar donated 144 solar panels for the system and the cost of building the system infrastructure will be covered by feed-in-tariff program (FiT) revenue. The project started in November 2015 and was completed and started to generate 46kWh of power per day in December 2015.

Thaipusam Festival Volunteers – To support the Thaipusam celebration in Penang, First Solar was one of many organizations providing a refreshment stall to serve free drinks and vegetarian food to the public. Volunteers from various departments at First Solar served more than 2,000 celebrants during the two-day festival. First Solar modules were temporarily installed to generate power for the refreshment stall and to showcase the company’s product and commitment to renewable energy.

This was the fifth year First Solar Malaysia associates volunteered at the event as part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts, which is funded by associate donations and contributions from Kulim management.