Chinese solar company
Yingli Green Energy Holding Co. Ltd.
) or Yingli Solar is all set to raise awareness about its brand and
solar power generally at one of the biggest sporting extravaganzas,
the 2014 FIFA World Cup, which was kicked off yesterday in
Yingli Solar - the world's largest vertically integrated
photovoltaic ("PV") module manufacturer - was the first Chinese and
renewable energy company to sponsor a FIFA World Cup event even way
back in 2010 in South Africa. This year's game will see the
installation of solar panels on at least two main stadiums, namely
the Arena Pernambuco in Recife and the Maracana stadium in Rio de
Janeiro, where the final will be played.
The Maracana stadium in Rio de Janeiro - one of the largest
stadiums in South America - have installed 390 kilowatt peak (kWp)
of solar panels sufficient to power 240 homes a year while reducing
Brazil's carbon emission by 2560 tons each year. On the other hand,
the Arena Pernambuco is now powered with clean energy from a 1
megawatt (MW) solar power plant. Arena Pernambuco's solar PV system
will generate over 1500 MWh of clean energy per year that will meet
30% of the region's electricity demand. The Chinese manufacturer is
providing 3,650 monocrystalline PANDA Series panels for a
fix-tilted ground-mounted system on 15,000 square meters of land
near the stadium.
Solar in Sports
In the 83 years of soccer history, this World Cup marks a benchmark
as being one of the most environmentally sustainable events that
has ever been staged.
Apart from facilitating solar power in the above mentioned
stadiums, Yingli Solar will also provide charging stations in
stadiums as well as solar powered information towers. The company
is not only targeting residential consumers, but seems to be
interested in making connections with global sports franchises and
stadiums. The Yingli Solar-FIFA partnership has already grabbed the
attention of several stadiums around Brazil, as well as NFL's New
In 2012, Yingli Solar had teamed up with the U.S. Soccer Federation
to promote solar energy. The company has strong associations with
soccer and it has got key sponsorship agreements with FC Bayern
The World Cup serves as a perfect marketing platform to sell any
company's products globally be it beer to sports jerseys. But who
would have thought of solar? Notably, World Cup viewership is on
the upswing in the U.S. Since the 2006 tournament, the viewership
has gone up by about 70%. As California, Massachusetts, New Jersey
and Pennsylvania are the biggest solar panel markets in the world,
the company's sponsorship of the FIFA World Cup might generate
widespread interest and brand recall in these markets.
As per media reports, Yingli Solar has seen a boost in PV module
shipments in the past few years thanks to the World Cup effect. Its
shipments skyrocketed with 2.2 gigawatts (GW) in 2012 and 3.2 GW in
Will the Chinese and U.S. Attempt Give a Push to
Alternative energy is now an important component in the power
generation mix in many developed and developing nations. The
depletion of fossil fuel reserves, higher oil and gas prices, new
and advanced technologies, accompanied with more competent
alternative energy applications have made green power more
Notably, 2013 showed astounding scale in the Chinese market,
overtaking longtime leader Germany. China plans to install 14.5 GW
of solar generating capacity, of which 8 GW would be from
distributed solar energy.
In that light, the U.S. still has a lot of catching up to do,
despite enormous potential, to get anywhere close to the global
leaders. The demand for renewable energy, in particular solar and
wind, is rapidly growing for electricity generation in the U.S.
Recently, Warren Buffett - the most successful investor of the 20th
century - committed to pump another $15 billion into renewable
energy, doubling his clean energy portfolio to $30 billion. His
Berkshire Hathaway Inc.
) is spending big money to build wind and solar power in the U.S.
The business has invested in a solar farm in California that will
be one of the world's largest upon its completion in 2015.
President Obama's latest attempt to crack down on carbon emissions
will likely prove to be beneficial for renewable energy stocks and
is certainly one of the most significant efforts to address global
warming and climate change in U.S. history. A proposed new
Environmental Protection Agency rule would reduce carbon emission
from power plants 30% by 2030, compared to 2005 levels.
The U.S. solar PV installer
) is also trying to popularize rooftop solar with new marketing
ploys. The company has lately teamed up with big-box retailers like
Best Buy Company, Inc.
The Home Depot, Inc.
) to make solar services readily available to customers. The
company has also collaborated with
) to lure potential customers online.
Though solar is becoming increasingly popular as an alternative
energy source, the expansion of renewable energy manufacturing
infrastructure has sparked off trade conflicts among the major
solar product producing countries. Specifically, every country in
this arena is trying its level best to protect homegrown interests.
Washington has once again slapped new import duties on solar panels
and other related products from China - the world's prime
manufacturer of solar panels.
China had earlier hit back by imposing anti-subsidy duties of 53.3%
to 57% on U.S. polysilicon and claimed that the imports were being
sold below market value.
Globally, China leads the world in total electricity generation
from renewable sources, helped by its increased allegiance in
recent times to the alternative path. The dragon is followed
closely by the U.S., Brazil and Canada.
Now with Yingli Solar's broad exposure through the 2014 FIFA World
Cup, Brazil will likely resolve the ongoing power crisis that the
country is facing by chalking out how solar can play a key role in
solving this challenge. In this respect, this Chinese company's
endeavor to popularize solar power is indeed commendable keeping in
mind the global solar landscape, which is shifting from traditional
U.S. and European markets to the emerging markets like Brazil.
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