Another Obama-Backed Green Energy Company Goes Bust
Another green energy company that was awarded stimulus cash for its survival went belly up this past week. The Obama Administration awarded $43 million in conditional loan guarantees from the Department of Energy to Beacon Power in June 2009. Now it’s bankrupt.
Yahoo Finance reported, via Free Republic:
Beacon Power Corp filed for bankruptcy on Sunday, just a year after the energy storage company received a $43 million loan guarantee from a controversial Department of Energy program.
The bankruptcy comes about two months after Solyndra — a solar panel maker with a $535 million loan guarantee — also filed for Chapter 11, creating a political embarrassment for the administration of President Barack Obama, which has championed the loans as a way to create “green energy” jobs.
Beacon Power drew down $39 million of its government-guaranteed loan to fund a portion of a $69 million, 20-megawatt flywheel energy storage plant in Stephentown, New York.
There are several key differences between the two loans, an Energy Department spokesman said on Sunday, noting the Beacon plant continues to operate, unlike Solyndra, which shut down shortly before filing for bankruptcy.
The Energy Department also had agreed to restructure Solyndra’s debt in a last-ditch effort to keep the company alive, a deal which put taxpayers behind $75 million in private investment. But for the Beacon project, the government loan is the first debt the company must pay, the spokesman said.
But the new bankruptcy will stoke criticism from Republicans in the House of Representatives who are investigating whether Obama campaign donors who were investors in Solyndra played a role in decisions on the loan — allegations denied by the White House and Department of Energy (DOE).
“This latest failure is a sharp reminder that DOE has fallen well short of delivering the stimulus jobs that were promised, and now taxpayers find themselves millions of more dollars in the hole,” said Cliff Stearns, a Florida Republican who is leading the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s probe.