In 2020, as the world dealt with (and continues to work around) the COVID-19 pandemic, Intel Malaysia began construction work on a new solar system that was targeted to go into operation by January of 2021. Now, the company has announced that six buildings across Intel Malaysia’s Kulim and Penang campus are now partly powered by solar energy—which makes this Intel’s largest solar farm outside the U.S.
Thanks to the completion of the new 3.2MW solar installation, Intel Malaysia’s campus now contributes around 15 percent of Intel’s global, on-site solar PV electric power capacity. Crucially, Intel says that carbon dioxide emissions are now reduced by around 3,800 tonnes.
According to Robin Martin, Corporate VP and GM of Assembly Test Manufacturing and MD of Intel Malaysia:
“Our continued investments in alternative energy is a key pillar of Intel’s continued commitment to operating our manufacturing facilities with the lowest impact to the environment. The use of renewable power generated on-site at Intel Malaysia is a critical part of Intel’s efforts as a responsible corporate citizen to doing better by our planet, and as part of our RISE 2030 goals of achieving 100% renewable power”
What does this really mean, and why does it matter?
Well, as mentioned above, it’s all about reducing carbon emissions. The new solar farm panels at the Malaysian campus generate around 6,000MWh of electricity every year, used across an area equivalent to 900 carpark spaces plus 50,208 of square feet on rooftops. This means that electricity usage—particularly during peak hours—is now partially supplied by solar power.
Prior to this, the energy supply at the campus was mostly powered by natural gas and coal sources, so this focus on renewable energy is certainly commendable. Additionally, Intel says that this move is also about its commitment to conserve energy and expand renewable energy projects and energy-efficient technologies—all in the name of combating climate change.
To find out more, see Intel’s full statement here.