Three more tax-funded green companies show signs of failure

Obama greenEver since Solyndra took a fall after having received a $535 million U.S. Energy Department loan guarantee, it seems that a week doesn’t pass without another green energy company biting the dust. This week three of them gave the Obama administration disappointing news.

The first are a pair of solar panel manufacturers — foreign-owned solar manufacturers — that each announced significant layoffs. According to Lachlan Markay, writing for 

A pair of foreign-owned solar companies that benefited from a combined $84 million in Energy Department tax credits have announced they will lay off employees.

One of the companies, German-owned SolarWorld, was integral in the fight for tariffs against the importation of Chinese photovoltaic solar panels. The other, Chinese company SunTech, blamed those tariffs for its own layoffs.

Both companies benefited from the Energy Department’s stimulus-funded Advanced Energy Manufacturing (48C) Tax Credit. The 48C credit is worth up to 30% of the cost of manufacturing qualifying green energy projects.

The third green company involves an outright bankruptcy.

Last month, A123 Systems, which manufacturers high-tech batteries for electric vehicles, struck yet another blow to the Obama administration when it filed for protection under Chapter 11 after having received approximately $132 million of a $249 million grant. But that wasn’t the half of it. On Friday, The Economic Times reported,

That same day, Oct. 16, A123 received a $946,830 payment as part of its $249 million clean energy grant from the Energy Department, the company said in a letter, obtained by Reuters, to Republican Senators John Thune and Chuck Grassley.

In the letter, dated Nov. 14, A123 said the October payment was the most recent disbursement it had received from the government, with an additional $115.8 million still outstanding on the grant.

Maybe they used that last government check to pay their bankruptcy lawyers.

I have no doubt but that some day, wind and solar will become economically feasible. But it won’t happen because the government threw money at the problem.

I’ve said it before: Subsidies reward failure; free market capitalism rewards success. Here’s a partial list of Obama’s green energy failures.


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