At a time when the federal government is debating whether to raise the debt ceiling, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Loan Programs Office (LPO) is offering guaranteed financing to First Solar Inc. for three solar panel projects in California for $4.5 billion. Not million but billion.
Carefully analyzed, these projects do little to fund efficient energy production or create permanent jobs. Such largesse is one of many rich targets for immediate deficit reduction in any budget deal.
LPO specifically targets projects that promote clean energy and includes “job creation; reducing dependency on foreign oil; improving our environmental legacy; and enhancing American competitiveness in the global economy of the 21st century.”
Specifically, these loan guarantees promote projects that include biomass, hydrogen, wind and hydropower, advanced fossil energy coal, carbon sequestration practices and technologies, electricity delivery and energy reliability, alternative fuel vehicles, industry energy efficiency projects, pollution control equipment, nuclear, and solar power.…