Bloom Energy has announced the grand opening of its multi-gigawatt Fremont, California, manufacturing plant. The newly operational, state-of-the-art 164,000 square foot facility, representing a $200 million investment, follows the recent expansion of the company’s global headquarters in San Jose and the opening of a new research and technical centre and a global hydrogen development facility in Fremont. Bloom’s expanded footprint, now more than 524,000 square feet, is expected to create more than 400 clean energy jobs by year-end, bringing Bloom’s California headcount to nearly 2,000.

California Governor Gavin Newsom, State Senator Nancy Skinner, State Senator Bob Wieckowski, Fremont Mayor Lily Mei, and Alameda County Supervisor David Haubert were on hand Wednesday to tour the new Bloom Energy Fremont Manufacturing Plant and see the production of solid oxide fuel cells first-hand.

“Powering our homes and our communities has never been more important – especially as the Golden State weathers some of the most dire impacts of climate change like extreme heat and wildfire,” said Governor Newsom. “Together with partners like Bloom Energy, California is powering the future while creating thousands of new jobs in manufacturing and clean energy. Our state’s reliable energy future depends on the hard work and innovation of California-bred companies.”

As the energy industry decarbonises, Bloom is well-positioned to meet the moment with an unmatched ability to directly convert a variety of fuels to clean, resilient electricity and electricity into storable, clean hydrogen with unmatched efficiencies.

Extreme drought, heatwaves, and wildfires have challenged California’s ability to provide resilient energy, notably in the evening hours during the summer. Under extreme conditions, California officials are planning for potential energy shortfalls that could add up to many gigawatts. Bloom’s microgrids can provide space-efficient energy capacity on a 24/7 basis, creating islands of energy resiliency, adding capacity and resiliency to the grid, producing virtually no harmful air pollutants for residents, and protecting against extended grid outages caused by extreme weather, earthquakes, and potential cyberattacks. When time is of the essence to ensure continuous power is up and running, the Bloom microgrid solution was designed with quick “time to power” as an important value proposition – from installation to providing always-on power within a matter of weeks.

“Founded over twenty years ago, we are a global pioneer in clean energy technology,” said KR Sridhar, founder, chairman and CEO, of Bloom Energy. “Our roots are here, and our home is here. We are proud to continue innovating in Silicon Valley, fully supporting California as a beacon for the rest of the world in its energy transition. It is important to ensure both energy resiliency and reliability today are accessible while charting a sustainable path to decarbonisation. We need to make the right decisions now that support the lifeblood of our digital economy.”

A typical nuclear reactor produces one gigawatt of electrical power and takes, on average, eight to 10 years to build. Bloom’s new Fremont plant will have an annual output of more than one gigawatt, equivalent to adding a nuclear power plant every year.

“As Bloom’s power is generated on-site where power is consumed, we do not face the same challenges as traditional power plants, such as the maintenance of power lines,” added Sridhar. “And, unlike most nuclear power plants that consume billions of gallons of water each year, we use little to no water. It’s an incredibly precious resource that needs to be conserved, especially now.”

Bloom’s technology can play an important role for customers in California, generating clean, reliable, distributed power. In fact, in 2020, when California’s utilities were forced to cut power to as many as two million residents to protect the grid’s stability, Bloom customers graciously stepped up. With the support of Bloom customers, we could take megawatts of excess power generation and return them to the grid, keeping the lights on for vulnerable populations across California and producing enough energy to power 15,000 homes.

“The great people at Bloom Energy are showing us yet again that the green economy is an economy for all – creating desirable full–time jobs for Californians of all stripes while leading us toward a more climate-resilient future,” said State Senator Bob Wieckowski.

“Thank you to Bloom Energy for building its advanced manufacturing facility right here in Fremont, creating hundreds of new jobs and career opportunities that can help support families in our high-cost region. Creating smart high-paying jobs is exactly what our state needs right now,” said Fremont Mayor Lily Mei.

“I’m excited that as our economy evolves, Alamada County is home to new green and highly paid manufacturing jobs,” said Alameda County Supervisor David Haubert.

Image source: Courtesy of Bloom Energy

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