American solar plant shuts resulting in massive job losses

Evergreen Solar has announced its closing its plant in Devens, USA, and moving production to China.

The decision means 800 workers will be laid off.

Evergreen Solar, Inc. is a manufacturer of String Ribbon solar power products. According to Evergreen, its intent to shut down operations at Devens will better the company’s position to pursue its industry standard size wafer strategy and preserve the company's liquidity.

The company is scheduled to completely shut down the manufacturing facility by the end of the first quarter of 2011.

In a statement, Michael El-Hillow, president and chief executive officer, said: "We have consistently stated during quarterly conference calls throughout 2010 that we would continue to manufacture in Devens as long as it was economically feasible. During the month of December, we experienced a 10 per cent decrease in average selling prices from the beginning of the fourth quarter. As industry selling prices continue their rapid declines into 2011, panel manufacturing in Devens, either fully or partially, is no longer economically feasible, consequently requiring a complete shutdown of the facility.”

Evergreen Solar will continue to operate its high temperature filament plant in Midland, Michigan and its wafer facility in Wuhan, China.

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