MD DC DE VA Solar Energy Industries Association

Canadian Solar Joins MDV-SEIA as a Silver Sponsor for Solar Focus 2013


Nov 13


Canadian Solar joins MDV-SEIA as a Silver Sponsor for the 7th annual Solar Focus Conference. MDV-SEIA is proud to partner on this event with Canadian Solar, a longtime supporter of the organization’s efforts and an active solar stakeholder in the Mid-Atlantic. We had a chance to catch up with the Canadian Solar’s team to learn more about the company and their thoughts on East Coast solar.

MDV-SEIA: Tell us a little bit about Canadian Solar

Canadian Solar: Founded in 2001 in Toronto, Canadian Solar Inc., (NASDAQ:CSIQ) is one of the world’s largest and foremost solar power companies. As a leading vertically integrated manufacturer of solar modules, specialized solar products and turnkey PV project solution provider. Canadian Solar’s products are manufactured with uncompromising quality, durability, performance and value, adhering to the strictest international quality standards. Ensuring a high return on investment for our customers is a guiding principle of the organization.

MDV-SEIA: What markets do you operate in?

Canadian Solar: Canadian Solar is headquartered in Guelph, Ontario, Canada and operates in more than a dozen countries across six continents. Our main businesses are located in the world’s major solar market which includes: Canada, USA, Brazil, China, Australia, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Japan, Singapore and South Korea.

MDV-SEIA: What opportunities do you see for distributed solar on the East Coast?

Canadian Solar: There are very exciting opportunities with large commercial solar projects ( 5-10mw) in North Carolina as well as residential solar projects (6KW-10KW) in Delaware, Maryland, and Washington DC, which are driven by state tax equities and robust loan and leasing programs, respectively.

MDV-SEIA: What challenges do you see?

Canadian Solar: Currently, varying state and local constraints and limitations on accelerating solar energy adoption and growth, and having to operate in a market which is unfortunately littered with very low-quality/financially weak module suppliers is challenging, but nothing out of the ordinary. There also have been some challenges with financing smaller commercial projects, as financial institutions are hesitant to work with organizations which may not necessarily have the equity and track-record larger businesses carry.

However, we are well prepared, as 12 years of operation across six continents has allowed our organization the opportunity to face and tackle many different types of challenges.

MDV-SEIA: Whether East Coast or West Coast, which state/utility level programs or polices do you see as being a good model for others to follow?

Canadian Solar: At a State level, North Carolina, California, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Connecticut are great examples of environments conducive to building effective commercial and residential solar projects.

In terms of policy and programs, we envision a market where the practice of net-metering is adopted across 50 states. Net metering is a policy which is unquestionably successful and effective. It is no surprise that the loudest lobbyists against net metering come from those who are opposed to sustainable energy in general.

About Canadian Solar

Canadian Solar Inc. is one of the leading solar manufacturers in the world, delivering industry leading high efficiency solar cells, solar modules, solar power systems and off grid solar power application solutions. With manufacturing facilities in Canada and China, Canadian Solar has a total module production capacity of 2.4GW. In the past 12 years, Canadian Solar has been working closely with over 1000 customers in over 70 countries, delivering over 6GW of solar modules. Some of these modules are installed in utility scale power plant that won 2012 Solar Project of the Year award; some are used by tens and thousands of families in their off grid small solar home systems for daily lighting. From far and wide, Canadian Solar stands for QUALITYRELIABILITY and VALUE.

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Founded in 1984, MDV-SEIA represents the interests of photovoltaic and solar thermal developers, financiers, equipment manufacturers, installers, distributors and component suppliers serving Maryland, the District of Columbia, and Virginia. Our members design, sell, integrate, install, maintain and finance solar energy equipment for residential, commercial and institutional customers throughout the region.

MDV-SEIA delivers on policy formation and advocacy, market representation, networking, education, and additional benefits to our 100+ members representing more than 2,000 direct jobs in our region. In the last few years, MDV-SEIA’s leadership has resulted in increased state requirements as well as increased penalties for non-compliance, creation of a solar thermal market, improvements to net metering, and game changing gains in the deployment of solar.

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