Apple working with US company, Leaf Solar Power, on North Carolina solar farm

“While companies from China dominate solar panel production, Apple has opted to partner with an American company to help build its forthcoming solar farm in North Carolina,” Neil Hughes reports for AppleInsider.

“Leaf Solar Power, a renewable energy company based out of Lake Worth, Fla., is working with Apple on a new solar farm that will power its $1 billion data center, according to a person familiar with the ongoing project,” Hughes reports. “Leaf Solar’s involvement in Apple’s North Carolina solar farm may be the the company’s largest and most lucrative partnership yet, as Leaf’s official LinkedIn page notes that it specializes in residential and ‘small’ commercial projects in South Florida.”

Hughes reports, “More details on the solar farm will surface when Apple decides to formally apply for a building permit — a process that could also expose the full extent of Leaf Solar’s involvement in the project.”

Read more in the full article here.

59 Comments

      1. Can’t wait for the fraud investigation into this massive theft of hard earned tax payer money siphoned off and given to this sham of a business. So corrupt it’s sickening. Look into the Solyndra story you fools.

      2. How much of carbon footprint is created manufacturing solar panels? How much space do the end of life panels take up? How long does it take for the end of life panels to break back down into the environment? How much fossil fuel is used to manufacture the solar panels? How much fossil fuel is used to ship the solar panels from China to North Carolina. Why are we giving jobs to the Chinese when these solar panels could be made in the US by UNION workers? How toxic are the chemicals used in manufacturing the solar panels? How toxic is the cleaning solution to clean the solar panels? How many little, furry creatures habitats will be destroyed by these solar panels. How many birds will fly into the the solar panels and be killed by them? How much do the solar panels off gas? How much tax money will be stolen from hard working citizens to subsidize this when that money could have been used to lower taxes?

        1. as if you knew what those “IslamoCommunoHomoFascist” words scramble even mean.

          How can one be a Communist and Fascists at the same time?

          Additionally, only simpletons believe Santa Claus exists outside of the realm of 6 y.o.’s imaginations. Do you actually believe Christ was born on Christmas? Also the story of Jesus Christ has been recycled since before the time of Horus (which was Christ’s equivalent in Egyptian mythology). You ever notice how Christ was dead for three days and then risen? Ever notice how the solar calendar does the same around Dec. 25th, for three days it travels backward in the sky as the Earth proceeds with its processional wobble? Coincidence?
          I would have thought with these modern times with computers and the internet people would stop believing in fairy tales and superstitious avatars.

      1. The “Obama tax on Christmas trees” was a USDA fee requested by the National Christmas Tree Association, not by Obama:

        http://hosted2.ap.org/COGRA/e109e277e48c4e219e07a1d4710177b3/Article_2011-11-09-Christmas%20Tree%20Fees/id-25935d56aedb4ecca67d6b1377e47962

        The program — similar to familiar industry campaigns like “Got Milk?” ”Beef: It’s What’s For Dinner” and “The Incredible Edible Egg” — would have been fully funded by fees on the industry at 15 cents per Christmas tree sold. The industry had asked the USDA to set up the program.

    1. If it were really a waste of money, do you think Apple – a publicly traded, for-profit corporation – would be pursuing it?

      What’s wrong with feeding the massive power requirements of the data center with renewable power?

      Your knee-jerk reaction is what is pathetic.

      1. Hey, give them a break. They know WAY WAY WAY more about solar power than Apple’s engineers, and they rightly proclaim that Apple’s reputation as among the most forward thinking of all companies is pure hogwash. And I tell ya, when they stand up at stockholder meetings and demand that Apple return to CRTs, Motorola processors, floppy disks and 150-megabyte hard drives, I AM WITH THEM. Now get out of my hair so I can fire up my coal-powered abacus, because that damn thing will outperform ANY calculation functions on my eight-core Mac Pro .

        1. Solar power is Bull Shit and a waste of money. This is just part of the feel good, knee jerk, “Green Movement” of the moment. Can’t wait for the first hurricane to take out the solar panels. Not to mention pollen, bird shit, dust, clouds, night time. Give me a freaking break. Maybe they can put up some “wind farms” while they’re at it and cause blind spots in our radar systems, drive people nuts from the whirring sounds, kill every protected yellow bellied, tuft feathered, chirping finch that fly right into them and in the end not produce much power. Precisely the fact that they are a publicly traded company that they should not be wasting their money on this not ready for prime time science.

          1. Yea, a nuclear plant that could shatter in a heartbeat under the strain of an earthquake thereby releasing all kinds of radiation is certainly a better move.

          2. Think of the job opportunity for you. Cleaning bird shit off of Apples solar panels could vault you up from McD sandwich assembler to solar panel surface maintenance technician.

    2. Who died and made you a fucking expert? Perhaps you’d prefer Apple built a nuclear or gas powered generating system, or how about several thousand 450′ wind turbines. The sort that only work 15% of the time.
      Fuckwit.

    3. Current solar cells are quickly dropping in price, similar to Moore’s Law. Solar panels used to take 15 to 20 years to pay back the investment, but they dropped in price by roughly 30% last year alone, making the payback period much quicker now. Best estimates are that they will be equivalent to coal in about 5 years. See here for more details:
      http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/2011/03/16/smaller-cheaper-faster-does-moores-law-apply-to-solar-cells/

      1. How long do they last before they have to replaced. All of you green freaks are all worked up into a lather over this waste of money. Get ready people the green police are coming for you.

        Here’s a look at our near future and it won’t be as funny as the commerical:

        1. At least they CAN be replaced. What do you suggest we do about combusting finite resources? How’s that gonna end up, genius? You a big fan of oil wars? Handing of 100s of billions to countries that hate us?

          I don’t believe in man-created global warming, but why the hell do you idiots insist on continuing to pollute the air we breathe? Big fan of smog?

      2. If it really worked every conservative would be 100% for it. You global warming, liar democrats, have shoved every one of you commie agendas down everyone’s throats and there will be a huge backlash at election time. 99.9% of the time you libtards are wrong and liying.

        1. please tell me a thing the conservative republican party has been right on the issues in 30 years, hell make it 50?
          Civil Rights? lol.
          Reaganomics? we are living the result of that, and even REAGAN raised TAXES 7 TIMES! Even he proved himself wrong while in office.
          Tax cuts for the Rich?
          National Security?
          Iraq War?
          9/11?
          Please let me know what the conservatives have been RIGHT on that has best served this country.

          1. The sad thing is anyone with more half a brain, and that doesn’t include liberals obviously, knows that liberalism is always wrong about everything. Liberals lie, cheat, and steal every waking minute to try to destroy freedom and liberty and the US. Rhetoric Idiot proves this again.

            1. If Liberals don’t have even half a brain, what does that about the Party of Stupid (GOP) that statistics show has a lower average IQ and level of education.

              You conservatives amuse me.

    1. Only one problem with this theory.

      We can’t drill fast enough or dig fast enough to make ourselves energy independant.

      The US hit peak oil in the early seventies and its all downhill and diminishing returns from there on out.

      There is no drill bit that will change that reality.

  1. Why on earth would anyone be against Apple doing this? Say that solar and fossil fuels were equally capable of providing power, why would you choose fossil fuels? Makes no sense! Solar power has improved so much it is close to that capacity now, especially in situations like this one.

  2. Who’s Solyndra? Is that the name of another blonde-haired Herman Cain sexual assault victim come forward to tell her story? No wonder you rightwing neanderthals hate workplace protections for women so much.

    1. Hey R2-Jack Ass,

      It’s so obvious what’s going on with Herman Cain it’s sick. Only a true commie-sheeple would buy into this left wing media and party attack on Herman Cain. How about Obama’s gay lover Sinclair. Google him. How about Bill Clinton’s non-stop sex attacks. These low life women are being paid off to come out and make this crap out. They are desperate and so is the democrat party. Herman Cain will come out of this stronger than ever.

  3. Solar power has so many advantages over fossil fuels that it boggles the mind that people would object to its installation, especially by a company with billions in the bank and a long track record of investing and planning for the long-run.

    Once the installation costs have been paid for (maybe 5-7 years at current costs), energy costs are free, forever. At the same time when utilities are maxed out during the summer (late afternoon), solar power kicks in the most, avoiding the use of highly polluting (and highly expensive) auxiliary power plants.

    Whether or not you believe in the science of climate change, the only reason NOT to support solar (or wind or biomass or any other renewable resource) is if you work for the oil, gas or coal industries.

    Or do you support the anti-American, pro-terrorist countries that supply most of our imported oil?? (Hello Saudi Arabia, Venezuela, Iran, and the rest of OPEC.)

    1. The lifetime of a solar panel is likely around 20 years, so “energy costs are free, forever” is a bit of an exaggeration. Nonetheless, I am a strong supporter of solar, wind, and wave/hydro power. The U.S. must diversify its electrical energy production, both in terms of sources and geographic distribution in order to meet increasing demand while also offload the national grid.

      There are many hidden costs to fossil fuels that some people prefer to ignore in order to artificially strengthen their arguments against renewable energy sources. Ironically, those same people tend to espouse a strong desire for national security, which is undermined by our reliance on foreign sources of fossil fuels.

    2. It is also important to note that the Apple data center runs 24/7 and requires power around the clock. The solar panels only produce power during the day, so the data center will use grid power during the night unless Apple also builds some type of energy storage facility (impractical).

      In terms of total energy consumption, Apple could vastly oversize the solar farm to produce excess power during the day to offset nighttime power consumption from the grid. That would be a massive solar farm, but Apple generally dreams big and achieves bigger.

  4. I’m not an expert.

    But I thought I heard that the efficiency of the Chinese solar cells was higher then what American companies are producing. And at a better price too.

    I’m all for buying American, but I am also for buying the best bang for the buck.

    If the Chinese companies are producing more efficient solar cells, shouldn’t of Apple purchased from them instead?

    1. There are costs, and then there are costs… For instance, the cost of shutting down mining of rare earth elements in the U.S. and other countries is a nearly complete reliance on China to supply those elements. The cost of focusing on fossil fuels to supply the bulk of U.S. energy is reliance on the Middle East, East Africa, Venezuela, and other countries to supply crude oil to the U.S. We have spent uncounted billions on oil imports which has, in turn, funded terrorism and military aggression in unstable regions of the world. And we have initiated or been drawn into conflicts which have cost over a trillion over the last decade, alone (in addition to the unreasonably large “defense” budget of over a half-trillion dollars per year).

      So you can see why I am not particularly concerned about a bit lower efficiency or a bit higher cost if it puts people back to work and removes them from the unemployment lines. In addition, I believe that American companies can match or beat the efficiencies of foreign sources of solar components once the domestic economies of scale ramp up.

      If we cannot afford to buy components and systems from American companies, then we will eventually become unable to afford them from any source. We have an unbalanced economy that is far too heavily focused on the service sector and the financial sector. Making money from money sounds great (for those who have money), but it does not necessarily produce much of value for the rest of us.

  5. Not against them trying this, but I hope it doesn’t blow up in their face — solar is simply an unproven source on this scale, especially in terms of constancy. Big win if it works, if it doesn’t a Blackberry outage nightmare, potentially.

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