Intel hones green-power strategy

| Print |  Email
Articles - March 2010
Thursday, February 25, 2010

Intel’s announcement that it will install solar power systems at four locations nationwide including Hillsboro represents the company’s most recent tactic in a sweeping global strategy to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Intel, Oregon’s largest private-sector employer, is the biggest user of electricity within Portland General Electric’s territory, burning through approximately 700 million kilowatt-hours per year at its Hillsboro plants. If Intel were to buy power through PGE’s normal mix of hydro, coal and gas, it would generate emission of 286,349 metric tons of CO2 annually, but that impact is lessened by the 27 million kwh of wind power Intel buys from PGE. It’s one of many steps Intel is taking to reduce its carbon footprint under Marty Sedler, director of global utilities and infrastructure.

Sedler says Intel has invested $30 million in conservation projects and another $125 million through its capital arm to support green companies including four solar power businesses. Most significantly, Intel has emerged as the nation’s top purchaser of green power for two years in a row, contracting in 2010 to buy more than 1.4 billion kwh of energy per year from wind, solar, biomass and geothermal sources.

The Environmental Protection Agency credits Intel’s green power investment with reducing its carbon footprint by the equivalent of 197,000 passenger vehicles or 134,000 American homes per year.

“Buying green power was the quickest way to create the most impact and do the most good,” Sedler says. “Installing solar is the next logical step.”

The new solar panels in Hillsboro would reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 32.8 million pounds, according to Intel’s calculations. Sedler says Intel has not decided exactly where to install the arrays, but it has elected to buy most of its panels from First Solar, an Arizona-based manufacturer that produces thin-film solar panels. That news may not go over well with Intel’s neighbor in Hillsboro, SolarWorld, which specializes in traditional crystalline panels and is in danger of losing market share to First Solar’s thin-film technology.

Sedler says conservation, green power and new solar arrays will all contribute to Intel’s goal to reduce its carbon footprint by 20% from 2007 levels over the next two years. He won’t say how much of a premium Intel pays to buy green power, but whatever Intel is spending extra is hardly making a dent on the bottom line. The company earned more than $2.3 billion during the final quarter of 2009 on $10.6 billion in revenues.

BEN JACKLET
 

More Articles

ZoomCare rolls out new on-demand health clinics

News
Monday, March 02, 2015
zoomcarethumbBY KIM MOORE |  OB RESEARCH EDITOR

Portland-based healthcare provider ZoomCare said it plans to “remake American healthcare” by expanding its on-demand urgent care model to emergency, surgery, dental and primary care, among others.


Read more...

10 Oregon companies positioning themselves for growth

The Latest
Friday, March 13, 2015
vcthumbBY JACOB PALMER | OB DIGITAL NEWS EDITOR

Ten startups have secured venture capital, angel or seed funding in 2015.


Read more...

The 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon

March 2015
Thursday, February 26, 2015
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR

Employment in Oregon is almost back up to prerecession levels — and employers are having to work harder to entice talented staff to join their ranks. This year’s 100 Best Companies to Work For in Oregon project showcases the kind of quality workplaces that foster happy employees. 


Read more...

Nuclear fingerprints

March 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

At Oregon State University, a 21st century version of the bad dream — nuclear terrorism — is alive and well. This winter, the Department of Nuclear Physics and Radiation Health Physics created a new interdisciplinary graduate emphasis in nuclear forensics, a Sherlock Holmes-sounding program that aims to identify how and where confiscated nuclear and radiological materials were created.


Read more...

Power Players

April 2015
Friday, March 27, 2015
BY ROBERT MULLIN

A new energy-sharing agreement sparks concerns about independence and collaboration in the region's utility industry.


Read more...

Courtside

April 2015
Thursday, March 26, 2015
BY JACOB PALMER

Power lunching at the Court Street Dairy Lunch in Salem.


Read more...

6 highlights from the Craft Brewers Conference

The Latest
Friday, April 17, 2015
thumbPHOTOS BY  JASON E. KAPLAN

The 32nd annual CBC attracted a record number of attendees (11,000)  to the Oregon Convention Center.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS