NORTH LAS VEGAS, USA: Amonix, Inc., a leading designer and manufacturer of concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) solar power systems, broke ground on its previously announced 214,000 square foot manufacturing facility on North Pecos Road in North Las Vegas, Nevada.
The facility will bring 278 green private sector clean energy jobs to Southern Nevada and, according to the Nevada Development Authority, will contribute $118 million in payroll and $12 million in taxes to the local economy in its first five years.
The groundbreaking ceremony was presided over by US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and attended by dignitaries including US Representative Shelley Berkley, Nevada State Senate Majority Leader Steven Horsford, and City of North Las Vegas Mayor Shari L. Buck.
US Senate Majority Leader Reid said: “There is simply nowhere better in the world to generate solar energy than right here in Nevada, and by next summer hundreds of Nevadans will be making solar modules right here in this building. That’s why I made sure the Recovery Act included almost $6 million in tax credits to help Amonix open this facility. Renewable energy is going to renew Nevada, one job at a time, one company at a time. And it starts right here, with good companies like Amonix.”
Congresswoman Berkley said: “This manufacturing facility shows us how we can tap one of Nevada's greatest natural resources – our sunshine – and match it with Amonix's solar industry leadership to boost our state's clean energy future. The result will be more jobs and more sustainable green energy for Nevada. I am honored to be part of this groundbreaking event today as we take another bold step forward in creating a brighter future for our community and for generations of Nevadans to come.”
State Senate Majority Leader Horsford said: “These are new jobs for the City of North Las Vegas, and we commend and thank Amonix for choosing Nevada. We have a resilient workforce in Nevada, which is the key to driving economic recovery. Our clean energy potential to create jobs has only just begun. More workers skilled in renewable energy jobs make our state even more attractive for renewable energy businesses.”
Mayor Buck said, “We are pleased to welcome Amonix to North Las Vegas and look forward to a bright future with them.”
Amonix received a $5.8 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act competitive manufacturing tax credit, legislation Senator Reid and Congresswoman Berkley championed, to open the new facility. The company said that it has begun hiring area residents to fill management, technical and production jobs, and that 135 local construction workers will build out the facility over the next few months.
In keeping with its commitment to produce sustainable energy in sustainable ways, Amonix has installed an Amonix 7700 solar power system as part of the facility’s electrical power source. Using clean reliable solar energy to provide power to a solar manufacturing facility is believed to be a first for a US solar manufacturer.
The company has also registered the major tenant improvement underway at the facility for certification through the US Green Building Council’s LEED for Commercial Interiors (LEED CI) Rating System.
Amonix will use the facility to manufacture CPV solar power systems for installations in Nevada and for export to neighboring states. When at full capacity, the manufacturing plant will operate 24 hours per day, seven days per week, turning out solar equipment with a production capacity of 150MWs annually. The first line in the first phase of the facility will begin manufacturing by the end of Q1 2011.
“CPV solar is a key part of America’s energy portfolio because of its compelling bottom lines in sunny and dry climates like the desert Southwest,” said Brian Robertson, Amonix CEO. “These include the highest efficiency of any solar technology, cost at grid parity and the fact that CPV uses no water in the production of energy.
Robertson continued: “Just as the federal government has helped many infrastructure projects get going in the history of our nation, this facility was jump started by tax credits available through the Recovery Act. For that reason, we appreciate the efforts of the elected officials here today – and give a special thanks to US Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and US Representative Shelley Berkley for helping us bring green energy jobs to Nevada.”