Tim Cook, CEO of Apple has announced a mega investment of $850 million to buy solar energy from First Solar, the largest developer in solar farms in the US.
Apple Spends $850M In World’s Largest Solar Power Deal
In what he calls the biggest, boldest and most ambitious project ever, Cook said, at the Goldman Sachs technology conference in San Francisco, that solar energy would be enough to provide electricity for all of Apple’s stores, data centers, offices and headquarters in California.
This is the largest ever deal for any technology firm and it nearly increases Apple’s stake in solar three times, according to market observers. Michel Di Capua, head of North American research at Bloomberg New Energy Finance said, “This is an enormous investment. This is a really big deal.”
The Apple solar panels deal makes Cook a pertinent player in the climate change debate and in the future trends in energy. In the past two years since becoming CEO of the world’s largest technology company, Cook has been passionate about the future of energy.
Apple has been keen on investing in solar and so far has completed two 20 Mw plants while a third one is underway in North Carolina and another 20 Mw plant is also under development in Reno, Nevada. Apple’s entire group of data centers are currently powered by solar energy.
Details of the Apple Solar Panels Deal
The apple solar panel deal will cost $850 million, allowing Apple to receive 130 megawatts of electricity for its offices. This amount is enough to power 60,000 homes in California.
The contract between Apple and First Solar will last for 25 year
The solar farm, to be situated in Monterey County will occupy 2,900 acres
The project is set to start mid-2015 and will be completed by the end of 2016
At the technology conference, Cook said, “We are all aware now that climate change is real. In our view, the time for talking has passed, and now is the time for action. Apple has shown that with our new deal.”
Apple is not the first tech company to invest in renewables. Other industry giants including Amazon, Google and Microsoft, who have invested heavily in wind, have already set the trend.
Even then, the sun is now the most sought after renewable for the future. The cost of setting up solar farms is now much cheaper compared to harnessing wind.
The International Energy Agency predicts that by 2050, solar could be the single largest source of electricity. So far, Apple’s deal with First Solar is the largest of its kind in terms of a single company’s investment in solar. Energy analysts see this as an important milestone on the path to cheap power from the sun.
However, the Apple solar panels investment is far from humanitarian. Cook was keen to stress that his company would make significant savings from this deal.
Unsurprisingly, following Cook’s announcement, Apple’s stock was valued at $711 billion at the end of the trading day. This made it the first company in the U.S. to go beyond the $700 billion stock valuation market. Both First Solar and Apple’s shares spiked as well.
|Trade Apple's Stock with|