Here's the release:
MAYOR NUTTER, GOVERNOR RENDELL ANNOUNCE DETAILS OF MAJOR SOLAR PROJECT COMING TO PHILADELPHIA
New manufacturing facility will create 400 new jobs at Navy Yard
PHILADELPHIA, November 30, 2009 — Mayor Michael A. Nutter joined Governor Edward G. Rendell to announce today that Helisosphera U.S., one of the world’s leading thin-film solar panel producers, will open a manufacturing facility at Philadelphia’s Navy Yard, creating up to 400 new jobs within three years and an estimated additional 200 construction jobs. Mayor Nutter also took the opportunity to speak about the emergence of the Philadelphia Navy Yard as a Clean Energy Campus.
“Increasingly when people think about clean energy and solar power, they are thinking about Philadelphia and our Clean Energy Campus at the Navy Yard," said Mayor Nutter. "Solar power is part of Philadelphia's future, and it is an essential part of America's future. It is investment in these types of technologies and creating these types of jobs that will propel Philadelphia towards our Greenworks Philadelphia goal of becoming the number one green city in the United States.”
The Heliosphera U.S. facility represents a $500 million investment and will create a 500,000 square foot facility with a 60,000 square foot clean room. The plant, which will produce 1.2 million solar modules per year, will be built on 40 acres in the Navy Yard Research Park which is a Keystone Innovation Zone.
This is the latest in a series of announcements positioning Philadelphia as one of the leading ‘green’ cities in the United States of America and Governor Rendell has noted that Philadelphia is gaining a reputation as an emerging leader in solar technology and development.
Mayor Nutter announced last week that $30 million in Recovery Act weatherization funding has started flowing to Philadelphia, allowing the City and the Energy Coordinating Agency to roughly double the number of homes weatherized through the Weatherization Assistance Program. Earlier this year, the U.S. Department of Energy designated Philadelphia as a "Solar America City." Last summer, the nation's leading solar industry group, the Solar Energy Industries Association, chose Philadelphia as the site of its first "PV America" conference, which attracted corporate executives, energy leaders, small business owners and entrepreneurs from across the nation. These developments move the City of Philadelphia closer to achieving its sustainability goals as outlined in Greenworks Philadelphia (www.greenworksphila.org).
Mayor Nutter also paid tribute to the leadership of Governor Rendell, America’s ‘Energy Governor’. Pennsylvania is one of the fastest growing states for wind power, ranking second nationally in wind power growth in the second and third quarters of 2009. By the end of 2009, Pennsylvania will have 17 operating wind farms providing 800 megawatts of electricity; enough to power 270,000 homes.
“On the issues of clean and renewable energy, Pennsylvania is a national leader in building and deploying new technology,” said Mayor Nutter. “We can thank Governor Ed Rendell for his vision and determination in making sure that just as Pennsylvania was the focal point of the industrial revolution in previous centuries, the Commonwealth will be well-positioned as a leader in clean, renewable energy in the 21st Century.”