The nation's credit crunch is affecting consumers and businesses - even green businesses. An article published on MNN discusses the slowing down of the nation's green markets. One of the areas mentioned was the solar panel market.
In the article, Alan Finkel of Green Life Guru discussed green home products, "Solar panels are a particularly hard sell, Finkel said, because of the hefty upfront investment that can run into the tens of thousands of dollars." Source: MNN
A Germany-based solar cell company, Q-Cells reduced its forecast for this year and an LA area installation company is increasing its advertising budget to compensate for the loss in sales.
However, the solar panel industry is getting a bit of a financial boon with the announcement that Hemlock Semiconductor Corp will be investing more than $2.2 billion into their solar projects. The funds will go towards building a new plant in Clarksville, Tennessee and increasing operations at a Michigan-based plant. The Clarksville plant will manufacture a product that is used in the creation of solar cells.
"The Clarksville plant is designed to initially make about 10,000 metric tons of polysilicon, but will be able expand to more than double that capacity. The site is expected to require about 1,000 construction workers for up to seven years, and create between 500 and 800 new jobs at the plant." Source: MNN