Enel North America, through its affiliate 3Sun USA, has selected Inola, Oklahoma, as the site for its proposed solar photovoltaic (PV) cell and panel production facility. The manufacturing plant, which is more than two million square feet in size, will have a 3 GW annual production capacity by 2025. The facility’s construction is scheduled to start in the autumn of 2023. Over 1,800 jobs are anticipated to be created throughout the project’s construction phase, which will require an expenditure of more than $1 billion.
Enel North America confirmed that the first panels from the factory will be available on the market by the end of 2024. This will be among the first facilities in the US to produce solar cells, which are the fundamental building blocks of PV modules. The company also noted that there is scope to expand the facility to a 6 GW capacity in the future, which could see the creation of an additional 900 new direct jobs.
In September 2021, Enel Green Power launched a pilot plant for the production of green hydrogen in Chile. The project is Chile’s first industrial-scale production plant of green hydrogen. The plant is located at Cabo Negro, north of Punta Arenas, and has a capacity of 1.25 MW. It is expected to produce green hydrogen through electrolysis powered by a 3.4 MW wind turbine. The plant is likely to be operational by 2022.
REGlobal’s Views: Enel is one of various companies to announce its solar manufacturing plans in the US ever since the release of the Inflation Reduction Act. Although, it is an early mover in the country’s solar cell manufacturing space. As US is expected to witness massive increase in solar power installations in the near future, many manufacturers are setting up bases within the country to cater to this market and avoid solar import barriers.