Air Products (NYSE: APD) will build a 12-acre solar farm at its corporate headquarters in Allentown, Pa., capable of generating 1.5 MW of electricity. The 1.5MW is enough to serve the energy needs of nearly half of Air Products' administration buildings. The project is expected to begin construction this fall and be onstream in the spring of 2011.
"For years, customers around the world have sought out Air Products' gases and materials to help improve environmental performance, and now we are excited to have this renewable energy opportunity right in our own backyard," said John McGlade, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Air Products. "Our employees are looking forward to putting our SunSource™ Solutions for photovoltaics to work thereby reducing our carbon footprint and generating sustainable, clean energy to power a portion of our campus."
Air Products has been supplying critical gases and materials to photovoltaic (PV) manufacturers who make solar panels for many years as part of its leadership in the electronics industry and, more recently, has been focusing on reducing PV manufacturing costs with its broad SunSource Solutions offerings.
The solar farm is made possible through investment by Air Products and a $1 million grant from Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as part of its 2008 Alternative Energy Funding Bill. Funding is administered by Pennsylvania's Commonwealth Financing Authority.
By utilizing the 1.5MW of renewable power, Air Products reduces its dependence on purchased electricity thereby lowering its carbon dioxide (CO2) footprint by more than 1,000 tons per year.