Another Obama Solar Company Goes Bankrupt

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    Apr 03, 2012 10:40 PM GMT
    Here we go again....

    Will the Federal government please stop pissing away taxpayer money on these boondoggles? These Washington politicians and bureaucrats know nothing about venture capital.

    In keeping with the recent trend of so-called green companies going into the red, another solar energy company supported by President Obama's top administration officials declared bankruptcy today.

    Solar Trust for America received $2.1 billion in conditional loan guarantees from the Department of Energy -- "the largest amount ever offered to a solar project," according to Energy Secretary Steven Chu -- for a project near Blythe, Calif., but declared bankruptcy within a year. It is unclear how much of the guarantee, if any, was actually awarded.

    Senior officials in Obama's administration had very high hopes for the Blythe project. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar attended the groundbreaking ceremony, which he described as "a historic moment in America’s new energy frontier" and "another important step in making America’s clean energy future a reality." Chu trumpeted at the time that Solar Trust would prove that "when we rev up the great American innovation machine, we can out-compete any other nation."
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    Apr 04, 2012 1:07 AM GMT T. Schmidt, chief executive of Solar Trust, says he is a fan of the Energy Department’s loan-guarantee program. He met with Energy Secretary Steven Chu and the program’s director, Jonathan Silver, when his company was seeking support for a 1,000-megawatt solar thermal plant it wanted to build in the California desert in Riverside County.

    But when the department offered him a $2.1 billion loan guarantee, Schmidt turned it down. It would have been one of the largest stimulus-funded clean-tech­nol­ogy projects, and Solar Trust had been negotiating the deal for roughly a year. But Schmidt decided it was too risky.

    “I’m now famous for getting the largest loan guarantee and then turning it down,” Schmidt said. “For very sound business reasons, we opted not to go forward.”