Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Subsidizing Obama’s Algae: Its advisors and allies

After documenting more in-depth government cronyism, corruption and corporate welfare during the course of my last two Green Corruption Files –– Nuclear Crimes and Misdemeanors" as well as "Nuclear Disaster" –– I then dug into biofuels, which is quite interesting, to say the least.

Today I’m back to uncovering "The RAT in the Recovery and the Gang of Eight," of which we've exposed six thus far, and this past May I gave a sneak peek into TJ Glauthier, another member of this "gang": those that were involved in crafting the energy sector of the 2009-Recovery Act, and who ultimately financially benefited from the Obama administration’s green energy policies and the $80 billion earmarked for renewable energy as well as other clean-energy funds from various budgets and departments.

While parts of TJ Glauthier's role in this massive green energy scheme has been documented by several conservative outlets since 2011, along with additional data, I'll be connecting the dots to give a complete tally on how Mr. Glauthier is tied to at least four green energy firms that raked in hundreds of millions in "green" funds, the majority from the so-called stimulus package –– "one of the largest economic rescue programs since Franklin Roosevelt's New Deal," of which Glauthier aided in authoring, at least the energy portion.

 Obama's Biofuel Buddies 

If you remember, back in February of 2012, the president stated, “We’re making new investments in the development of gasoline and diesel and jet fuel that’s actually made from a plant-like substance — algae.” This was during an energy speech in Miami, Florida, where Obama added; “You’ve got a bunch of algae out here, right? If we can figure out how to make energy out of that, we’ll be doing all right.”

But what the president failed to mention is that his administration has funded algae all right: millions of tax dollars subsidizing the green slime fuel dream went to the president's political advisors and green allies –– which Michelle Malkin, American conservative political commentator and author, in March 2012, so profoundly deemed Obama’s Algae Racket.

Starting with the Department of Energy (DOE), which in December 2009, through the stimulus package awarded up to $564 million for 19 integrated biorefinery projects, three of which were algae based, and the center of my research today. 

Meanwhile the Department of Agriculture (USDA) via the Biorefinery Assistance Program, as documented by Taxpayer for Common Sense in April of this year, since 2009, has given out about $1.02 billion in treasury-backed loan guarantees for ten biofuel companies –– with "six facilities that plan to process algae, municipal solid waste, or other organic waste into advanced biofuels and biogas." This is the same program that gave us Range Fuels, costing taxpayers millions of dollars. (NOTE: Range Fuels is connected to another billionaire Obama buddy, Vinod Khosla that I highlighted six months ago due to his affiliation to Kleiner Perkins, noting that Khosla Ventures was another big VC winner of clean-energy funds –– with more details to follow in the near future).

Additional Energy Department programs doled out big biofuel bucks to their buddies, such as the case of Mascoma, which is not only a Khosla and Kleiner Perkins investment, but another big VC firm with Obama allies at the helm –– which I'll briefly address shortly. Nevertheless, despite the fact that Mascoma had already been subsidized with government money and only created three jobs, in 2011 they were rewarded with $80 million from the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy EERE funded by the stimulus package. 

The DOE's loan program gave the Spanish company Abengoa more than $2.8 billion in loans and grants — making them the second largest recipient of the DOE 1705 loan guarantee program money, and a huge part of the Green Corruption Scandal that we broke in August 2012. While two of the taxpayer-funded loans were for solar, the third went to fund a biofuel project located in Kansas. Despite the fact that Fitch rated this project as "extremely speculative" –– just like the majority of the DOE loans: junk bonds and jammed packed with cronyism and corruption –– the Energy Department awarded Abengoa a $132.4 million loan in August 2011, which is projected to "support approximately 300 construction jobs and 65 permanent jobs."

Malkin and others reported on the stench surrounding the Obama administration's enormous, taxpayer-funded investments in politically connected biofuel companies such as the ones mentioned and others like Amyris, Coskata, and ZeaChem –– possibly a new post in the future, "Obama's Biofuel Buddies Rake in Big Green Bucks." Adding to the mystery was the January 2012 headlines confusing the nation: "A Fine for Not Using a Biofuel That Doesn’t Exist," heralded the New York Times.

It's also important to note that in July 2009, just months prior to the DOE announcement of the following three lucky winners of taxpayer-funded grants, algae fuel got a government boost. In 2009, the Wall Street Journal cited a report by the renewable energy and law blog of Stoel Rives LLP, whereas it stated that the "Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will count algae as an advanced biofuel under Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) mandates rules being developed." While this EPA regulation requires that 13.8 billion gallons of ethanol be blended into gasoline this year and 14.4 billion in 2014, it turns out that at that time, "biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol, sugar-cane ethanol and even biodiesel were envisioned in the RFS –– but algae was absent."

It's unclear as to the exact date that the green slime made its way into the EPA's list of biofuels considered as part of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS), which for now is primarily ethanol that is a fuel made from fermenting and distilling plant matter –– mostly corn in the U.S. But we do know that in February 2010, the Algal Biomass Organization praised President Obama for his strong support of the U.S. biofuels industry was well as the EPA's positive findings on algae-based biodiesel and algae-based renewable diesel. This ruling, from what I gather, basically "classified algae-based biodiesel and renewable diesel as an advanced biofuel under the guidelines established by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007."

In the meantime, this month soaring renewable fuel costs have sparked a new fight over the ethanol mandate –– and the battle to "fully repeal the federal ethanol mandate, which has been blamed for increasing fuel and food prices," is not only armed by concerned Senators, but also from oil, livestock, dairy, and restaurant industries. And as Amy Harder of the National Journal reported two days ago, "Other industries also concerned about the mandate include automakers, who are worried about engine safety being compromised by higher blends of ethanol, and environmental groups, which say emissions of greenhouse gases from ethanol production outweigh the benefits from burning less gasoline."

All this is in the midst of the Senate –– after a lengthy battle that was settled by a deal to avert the nuclear option –– confirmed the new EPA administrator Gina McCarthy, to replace outgoing chief Lisa Jackson. McCarthy, a controversial pick, labeled as Obama's Green Quarterback, who, according to Tim Carney, "is a consistent ethanol-industry defender." And just in time to help implement President Obama's radical climate agenda, whereas he has given the EPA sweeping powers in order to save the planet.

Trio of Obama Algae Allies Score Millions of Green  Taxpayer Dollars 

As I mentioned, in December 2009, the Energy Department, through the 2009-Recovery Act, dished out over half a billion taxpayer dollars to 19 integrated biorefinery projects, of which only three algae companies got free DOE money –– a trio of Obama's Algae Allies.

Solazyme: $21.7 million DOE stimulus grant; plus part of the $12 million biofuel contract with the U.S. Navy

The first one is tied to TJ Glauthier, the main focus of the Green Corruption File, whose past includes the key positions within the Clinton administration, and of all places the Department of Energy, “served on Obama’s 2008 White House Transition Team. Glauthier is widely credited –– even at one point on the Solazyme website ––– for specifically working on the energy provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Glauthier is a "Strategic Advisor” for Solayzyme as well as other renewable energy firms that I will get to later, but for now it is important to note that in December 2009, the San Francisco-based Solazyme Inc. won $21.7 million as part the “government’s $600 million advanced biorefinery project stimulus award.”

photo courtesy of
Then at the end of 2011, “thanks to one of President Obama's executive orders, Solazyme [and Dynamic Fuels] secured a $12 million contract with the U.S. Navy to unload hundreds of thousands of gallons of biofuel -- priced at an estimated four to seven times the normal cost of regular jet fuel,” wrote Malkin.

Also reporting on this amazing Obama spending story was The Heritage Foundation, who according to the Navy, marked this green deal, as "the “single largest purchase of biofuel in government history.” This deal, which included the purchase for 450,000 gallons of advanced biofuels, at the price of $15 per gallon, was for the "first demonstration [off the coast of Hawaii] of the so-called "'Great Green Fleet'" — an entire aircraft-carrier strike group relying on alternative energy sources," reported

Even, took aim, however, they provided an overall picture of Obama's green military plan: "And this is only the beginning of this two-for-one bad deal — swindling taxpayers while ravaging national security. Obama's Agriculture and Energy departments and Navy plan to spend $510 million over three years buying biofuel for military and commercial purposes, bypassing Congress by leveraging Defense Department procurement."

Besides the absurdity, you should know “Solazyme's ties to the White House and the Democratic establishment in Washington are myriad,” with their “officials including Glauthier having contributed at least $360,000 to Democrats since 2007," noted Michelle Malkin in March of 2012.

Malkin goes on…
The head of Solazyme's Washington lobbying office is Drew Littman, former chief of staff for Democratic Sen. Al Franken. Littman's old pal, entrenched D.C. lobbyist and Obama appointee Michael Meehan, feted Littman earlier this year and bragged that "we couldn't be more thrilled to be working on a daily basis with Drew and the Solazyme team."
More Solazyme Access and Influence

As divulged in Peter Schweizer's bombshell book, Throw Them All Out, we find another key player at Solazyme: Jerry Fiddler, a member and the chairman of the board of directors since 2004 –– also an investor –– is a large Democrat (only) donor, including contributing $24,000 to Obama's Victory Fund. And while his bio states that Mr. Fiddler is active in many "ventures," he serves as an Advisor at Foundation Capital, which is another part of this tale and I'll get to in a bit. But what's more relevant at this juncture is that there is another huge clean-energy player here: VantagePoint Capital Partners –– a firm with ties to the Department of Energy and the president. 

Due to the fact that VantagePoint's "green portfolio" overlaps with another VC firm, I briefly touched upon them in my January 2012 post about John Doerr and Al Gore. As I noted, Kleiner Perkins is also in cahoots with other fat-cat Obama bundles and donors that were huge winners at the Green Bank of Obama: Goldman Sachs, Khosla Ventures, and The Westly Group as well as Google Ventures and VantagePoint Capital Partners –– the latter is also an investor in Solazyme, Inc.

It turns out that on June 5, 2009, Solazyme announced their Series C round of $57 million of which investors "were joined by other new investors including VantagePoint Venture Partners" –– just about six months prior to Solazyme snagging that $21.7 million DOE stimulus grant.

VantagePoint is where we also find "DOE Insider," Sanjay Wagle, who was an Obama fundraiser for the 2008 campaign through his Clean Tech for Obama group. After the 2008 election, Wagle joined the Obama administration as a “renewable energy grants adviser” at the Department of Energy under then-Secretary Chu (reported to be at the ARPA-E program at the DOE).

Prior to arriving in Washington, Wagle was a principal at VantagePoint, a cleantech venture capital firm, where Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is a Partner and Senior Advisor. However, according to some greentech defenders, "Wagle gave up any interests in VantagePoint and the companies it invested in before joining DOE," and left the DOE sometime in 2012. That may be true (although I'd like to see the proof), but Wagle was part of the September 22, 2009, Valerie Jarrett "CLEAN ENERGY SUMMIT" held at the White House, whereas "attendees [had] struck gold, cashing in on $5.3 billion in taxpayer funds from the Obama administration."

While this data was dated June 5, 2012, this past January I found more, concluding that VantagePoint's portfolio has at least nine green energy firms that have snagged green-government subsidies under the Obama administration, which totals about $2.5 billion. (NOTE: the four Kleiner Perkins investments are marked with an asterisk*).
  1. 1366 Technologies: $150 million 1705 DOE loan tied to General Electric as well as the Former Obama Jobs Czar, Jeffrey Immelt and their "big green stimulus bucks
  2. Amprius*: $3 million and $5 million from different stimulus-funded programs
  3. BrightSource Energy and the $1.6 Billion Shady DOE Deal
  4. FloDesign*: over $8 million stimulus grant and $4 million funding from the state of Massachusetts
  5. Mascoma*: $80 million from the Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy EERE funded by the stimulus as well as close to $200 million from 2006 to 2008 under the Bush administration
  6. MiaSole'*: $101.8 million stimulus tax credit 
  7. Serious Energy with friends in the White House got serious cash: I can confirm that
    Serious Materials got a stimulus-related tax credit of $548,100. We also know that the stimulus package included “$8 billion in weatherization and energy efficiency grants for things like new windows in office buildings, as well as tax credits for homeowners who buy new, energy efficient windows." However, it’s hard to say how much of that $8 billion business Serious got, but we do know that they snagged government contracts via their QuietRock products.
  8. Solazyme: $21.7 million stimulus grant
  9. Telsa Motors and its Big Tale of Cronyism: $465 million DOE ATVM loan

The Green Slime Fuel Dream: Scent of a Scam

In a February 2012 reported that according to the White House, "the Department of Energy currently spends about $85 million on 30 research projects “to develop algal biofuels," and that Obama is committing another $14 million to the idea." Meanwhile this past February, the Environmental Leader News, who referenced an alternative energy report by Lux Research (“Leading Alternative Fuel Developers Race to Real Revenue in 2013"), gave some praise to Solazyme. Yet they also noted, "Out of the 29 algae companies compared in Lux’s analysis, 23, or 79 percent, are considered long shots. Algae was one of the weakest fields Lux surveyed."

Additionally, in March 2013, while Forbes featured Solazyme as "leader in the algal fuel race," as well as the co-founder Jonathan Wolfson and his algae-based fuel dream, there pessimism seeped through: "Wolfson has a long way to go in proving that his company’s concepts can make money — a prerequisite for having any hope of changing the world. Last year Solazyme posted a net loss of $83 million on sales of $44 million." And it seems that Solazyme's green fuel is not the money maker in the family: "Though Solazyme shares are down 30% in a year, investors do have some reason to believe that the food and face cream can keep it going until it finally cracks the price barrier on cleaner, greener fuels," closed Forbes.

What's interesting to note here too is that Wolfson also sat on the board of the Center for American Progress (CAP) Clean Tech Council, another driving force behind this clean-energy scheme that I have documented many times, but that's the nature of this scandal –– it's very incestuous.

Sapphire Energy: $54.5 million USDA loan; $50 million DOE stimulus grant 

There were two other Obama "algae allies" that got their fare share of "green" in December 2009 when then-Secretary Chu and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that the Energy Department was awarding $100 million to three algae biorefineries, as part of the half-billion-dollar biofuel subsidies. Besides Solazyme, the California based Sapphire Energy, not only received a $50 million grant from the DOE, but also a loan guarantee for up to $54.5 million (closed on October 21, 2011) through the Biorefinery Assistance Program for their "Green Crude Farm" in Southern New Mexico.

According to Sapphire's website, they began construction in 2010, and  "it is currently operating in a commercial test phase." Well maybe they haven't updated the Sapphire story, because in February 2012, the Washington Free Beacon reported, "like many stimulus projects, Sapphire’s new facility has faced delays. The plant was supposed to be operational by 2011, creating almost 750 temporary and 40 permanent jobs. But Sapphire did not break ground until June 2011," and as of the first quarter of 2013, as documented by, this algae project was only "50 percent completed."

The Beacon goes on: "In 2009, executives, board members, and employees at Sapphire contributed almost exclusively to Democratic campaigns. For example, then-Sapphire CEO Jason Pyle has donated only to Democrats" –– with Malkin noting that Sapphire's "website reads like a satellite White House communications office.”

Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and Bill Gates 
at the 2012 ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit
 Photo by Quentin Kruger, courtesy of
While the Beacon documented Sapphire's self-serving lobbing efforts, there are other key Obama connections that are very relevant: "Sapphire raised $100 million from private investment firms, including ARCH Venture Partners. Bob Nelsen, a founding partner of ARCH, served on Obama’s National Finance Committee during the 2008 campaign." However, not widely reported is the fact that part of that 2008 $100 million private funding came from the software mogul Bill Gates. He's also an investor in Sapphire Energy through what some refer to as Gate's "secretive private holding company," Cascade Investment LLC.

Needless to say, billionaire Gates has been known to be in cahoots with Energy Secretary Chu pushing a carbon tax, and in February 2012, Gates attended a campaign fundraiser for President Obama in the eastern Seattle suburb home of Jeff Brotman, founder of the low-cost supermarket chain Costco (another Obama pal), "where the US [Obama] leader cited his example to push for raising taxes on wealthy Americans," reported News.

We know that Microsoft Corporation bankrolled Obama's 2008 victory, contributing a whopping $852,164, marking them as the number four top contributor –– and in return, stated Brian Koenig of The New American "they were granted a key executive appointment and benefited from several pivotal legislative measures." In 2012, Microsoft continued their support with $814,645, which moved them up to the number two spot on the top Obama donor list. 

Moreover, in September 2012, Gates made it on the Business Insiders' list of "Biggest Political Donors In Silicon Valley" noting, "Over the course of the 2012 cycle, Bill and Melinda Gates have contributed $71,800 to Democrats, including $60,800 to the DNC and individual contributions to Obama, Washington Senator Patty Murray, and Suzan DelBene, who [was] running for Congress in Washington. The Gates family has also donated $5,000 to Republican South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham and $5,000 to the Microsoft Political Action Committee." 

Algenol Biofuels: $25 million DOE stimulus grant

This post opened with President Obama's February 2012 energy speech, delivered at the University of Miami, where he proclaimed algae as the new revolutionary fuel source. Well, that's because Algenol Biofuels was behind the reference, and according to Michelle Malkin, "In December 2008, when the White House announced the nomination of Energy Secretary Steven Chu, the CEO of Florida-based biofuels startup Algenol, Paul Woods, exulted to Time magazine: "You see this smile on my face? It's not going away. Everyone is really excited by this."

While it's difficult to track exactly why Mr. Woods was so happy about Chu to head the Energy Department –– although in hindsight we can make all kinds of accusations, like Chu's alignment with the president's huge green energy agenda that included keeping gas prices high, even $8.00 per gallon –– but what do know with certainty is that when criticism emerged from Newt Gingrich over Obama's algae endorsement, Woods drafted an open letter slamming Gingrich, while praising President Obama. 

Also, during the course of Forbes dubbing Algenol "Obama's favorite algae company," the author Jeff McMahon points to this: "Obama had political reasons to promote algae in Florida, the sunny, swampy, politically-volatile state he carried in 2008," because in December 2009, Algenol Biofuels racked up $25 million in federal stimulus grants from the Obama administration.

Furthermore, it doesn't hurt that Woods belongs to the right groups such as the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) as well as a board member at Algae Biomass Organization (ABO), along with Mr. Tim Zenk of Sapphire Energy –– the latter a busy group with a lobbying footprint inside Washington, D.C. and a strong supporter of President Obama. 

While this 25 million grant was "to build a pilot-scale biorefinery that will make ethanol directly from carbon dioxide using algae," according to Forbes, "The company had originally partnered with Dow Chemical to build a demonstration plant at a Dow facility in Freeport, Texas, but Dow withdrew from the project," and "Algenol shifted the facility to Florida adjacent to laboratories it also developed" with the DOE money. 

Then noted that in 2010, Lee County's Economic Development Committee also allocated a $10 million grant to support this project. They additionally acknowledged, "Construction of the facility began in October 2011, and is expected to create about 130 jobs." Two years later (February of this year), Algenol CEO Paul Woods, claimed that they have "completed major construction activities at their integrated pilot scale biorefinery in 2012," and they have "fully shifted focus to demonstrating the commercial viability of Direct to Ethanol technology at its pilot facility and identifying sites for commercial projects to begin in 2014."

Well, we will continue to monitor the green slime fuel dream, yet we may not know the reality of it for decades. Maybe by that time, we'll be putting broccoli in our automobiles –– who knows. But what we do know is that when it's "green," cronyism, corruption, and corporate welfare are sure to follow. But for now, let's get back to the main focus of this Green Corruption File, because TJ Glauthier is tied to more money from the taxpayer-funded Green Bank of Obama.

Foundation Capital Opened Up a New Can of Worms 
Glauthier, Board Member of EnerNOC and Advisor to SunRun: Both Big Stimulus Winners 

During the course of my “Smart Grid, Dirty Devices” post I chronicled Silver Spring Networks, whose customers won at least 30 percent of the $4.5 billion stimulus smart-grid grants: at least $1.3 billion of free taxpayer money. While this money came from the clean-energy stimulus funds allocated for "Electric Grid Modernization,” what’s interesting is that majority shareholder since 2004, is Foundation Capital.

Another key investor is the VC firm Kleiner Perkins, of which in 2008 they led a $75-million investment (along with Foundation Capital) into Silver Spring, which was one of the first funded from Kleiner Perkins’ $500 million Green Growth fund (established in May 2008). And as I’ve reported many times, two key villains operating inside this green energy scheme are the “global warming gurus, the mega rich John Doerr and Al Gore –– both friends since the 90's,  partners at Kleiner Perkins, and big Obama cronies.

What’s amazing is that Foundation Capital, who has a “friend” in the Obama White House was a big winner of green money: 12 renewable energy firms, of which 60 percent were winners totaling over $175 million of taxpayer money, and that does not take into account Silver Spring Network's $1.3 billion in contracts related to the smart-grid grants.

This smart grid story also led to three "DOE Insiders": Cathy Zoi, Sanjay Wagle (listed in this post as well), and Steve Westly, another expose’ I’m working on entitled, "The DOE Dirt Dozen."  However it is TJ Glauthier that I will be exposing more of today.

Mr. Glauthier, as mentioned earlier, past includes key positions inside Washington D.C., and according to his very own Linked-In bio, "In 2008, he served on President Obama’s transition team. In the Clinton Administration, he held two Presidential appointments: at the White House as Associate Director of OMB, and as the Deputy Secretary and COO of the Department of Energy, the second-highest position at DOE. At DOE, he was responsible for 120,000 federal and contractor employees, 17 national laboratories, and an annual budget of over $19 billion." Glauthier is also widely credited for specifically working on the energy provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

Since 2005, Mr. Glauthier has been the President of TJG Energy Associates, LLC, an energy- consulting firm, and considers himself "an executive, board member and strategic advisor in the energy sector." Glauthier is a Strategic Advisor for Solayzyme, and he serves on the board of three companies, including EnerNOC, and in 2010, he was named as a key advisor to SunRun –– the latter two green firms are part of Foundation Capital cleantech portfolio.

EnerNOC: $10 million stimulus funds for a contract with the State of Massachusetts 

EnerNOC, whereas the Venture Beat describes as “one of the leading players in the demand response space,” which apparently is some sort of fancy technology for the smart grid, in 2009 reported, “Foundation Capital was attempting to dial down its ownership in the Boston-based company, of which they had been the lead investor in EnerNOC’s second round of funding in 2005, leading the $7.75 million raised with $5 million.”

It turns out that EnerNOC went public in 2007, and in November 2011 USA Today did an analysis noting that the “Stimulus funds helped some stocks soar,” of which EnerNOC (and others I’m familiar with) was on that list. However, what most don’t know is that just over a year prior that report, the State of Massachusetts proudly announced, “Utilizing $10 million in stimulus funds, the DOER awarded a contract to Boston-based EnerNOC to implement a comprehensive Enterprise Energy Management System (EEMS).”

SunRun: 21 federal stimulus grants, across 10 states for over $140 million; plus partners with PG&E on a $100 million program that will get tax benefits in addition to some cash returns

SunRun, “the nation's leading residential solar electricity provider,” of which last December, became one of a trio of solar companies under investigation “to determine whether the companies accurately reported the market value of their costs when applying for federal reimbursement, which was calculated at one-third of the costs,” reported the Washington Post.

Ironically, while all three –– SolarCity, SunRun, and Sungevity –– are competitors, they all “boast investors with significant ties to the Obama White House,” noted the Heritage Foundation. Translation: all three have friends in high places, and together the three companies reportedly have claimed more than $500 million in taxpayer support,” while Fox News found that SolarCity had applied for $341 million in grants.

Now, I've covered SolarCity a few times: here and also in my February 2013 "Citigroup’s Massive Green Money Machine" post. Later, through researching Foundation's portfolio, I discovered that just from the 1603 stimulus grants, SunRun was awarded 21 grants, across 10 states for over $140 million free taxpayer money.

Plus in 2010, SunRun scored a $100 million joint program with the major utility Pacific Gas & Electric –– another huge player in this green energy scam that maintains a strong political presence in Washington, D.C., and is actively involved in California politics as well. Through connecting the dots and showing PG&E's Democratic "cronyism footprint," I uncovered (as of April 2013) that PG&E won a significant amount of stimulus money: at least seventeen transactions and over $55.4 million. Better yet, PG&E has an invested interest in "six solar projects that will sell power to PG&E, which have received a combined $5.5 billion in taxpayer-backed DOE loans," as exposed by the Washington Free Beacon, however, my research shows that it was closer to $7.7 billion.

Still, according to Venture Beat, in regards to SunRun's home solar financing deal, “PG&E will be funding the rooftop systems in question via its subsidiary, Pacific Energy Capital II, a tax equity fund,” of which “in lieu of traditional returns, the investor — PG&E in this case — gets tax benefits in addition to some cash returns.”

GridPoint: Benefited from scores of smart-grid stimulus funds and more 

In December 2011, a World Net Daily headline read"Outrage! Author of ‘stimulus’ tied to companies funded by bill: Received hundreds of millions in government grants, loans." 

KleinOnline reported on GridPoint Inc, noting that Glauthier "was appointed to the board in March 2008," yet it's unclear when he left that post. According to Klein, "GridPoint provides utilities software solutions for electrical grid management and electric power demand and supply balancing."

Two days later, Klein also broke the story on how Peter L. Corsell, the founder of GridPoint Inc., who served as the GridPoint’s chief executive officer from the company’s inception until transitioning to the position of non-executive chairman in October, 2010, "had made the maximum donation allowable to President Obama’s inauguration, contributing $50,000."

As I've chronicled numerous times, the 2009-stimlus package allotted $11 billion of the clean-energy stimulus funds for "Electric Grid Modernization," of which in the summer of 2009, the Energy Department started dishing out $4.5 billion in smart-grid grants, whereas free taxpayer money was awarded to selected utility companies for particular smart-grid projects. So, it seems that "GridPoint has benefited from scores of smart grid deals funded by the stimulus bill," and here is what Klein documented as of December 2011:
  1. The company partnered with the Electric Transportation Engineering Corporation (eTec), Nissan, the Idaho National Laboratory and others in a project to deploy electric vehicles (EVs) and their charging infrastructure in five states. The Energy Department had awarded eTec almost $100 million in “stimulus” funds to support the project. GridPoint’s role in the eTec project was to supply smart charging and data logging capability to utilities located in strategic markets of eTec’s program in Arizona, California, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington. 
  2. GridPoint also benefited from “stimulus” funds when it recently provided home energy management, load management and electric vehicle management software solutions for a KCP&L’s Green Impact Zone SmartGrid Demonstration in Kansas City, Mo. The project was the recipient of stimulus funding
  3. Additionally, GridPoint helped the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, or SMUD, to manage power from its customers’ rooftop solar panels. The Arlington, Va.-based company had landed a contract to help the Sacramento, Calif.-based municipal utility manage renewable power integration, energy storage and home energy management systems. SMUD had won $127.5 million in stimulus funds from the Department of Energy to carry out the project, which also includes deploying 600,000 smart meters in its service territory. 
  4. Also, in early 2009, the Energy Department awarded Argonne National Laboratory nearly $2.7 million in stimulus funding for three solar-energy related research projects. In addition, Argonne reportedly shared another $5 million in stimulus funding for projects with GridPoint and other companies and the University of Illinois Sustainable Technology Center. 
  5. Besides benefiting from stimulus grants, GridPoint last year won a $28 million contract with the United States Postal Service to install energy management systems in selected post office locations across the U.S.
In closing...

It would be nice to know if and how much stock Glauthier has in any of these clean-energy firms that cashed in on taxpayer money, however obviously, it is very rewarding to be on Obama's Team as well as a stimulus author with a past inside the Department of Energy. Still, the evidence is found in the fact that at least four green energy firms that Mr. TJ is connected to raked in hundreds of millions of green energy funds –– the majority from the 2009-Recovery Act that he helped craft.
  1. Solayzyme (Strategic Advisor): $21.7 million DOE stimulus grant; plus part of the $12 million biofuel contract with the U.S. Navy
  2. EnerNOC (Board Member): $10 million stimulus funds for a contract with the State of Massachusetts 
  3. SunRun (key Advisor): 21 federal stimulus grants, across 10 states for over $140 million; plus partners with PG&E on a $100 million program that will get tax benefits in addition to some cash returns
  4. GridPoint (former Board Member): Benefited from scores of smart-grid stimulus funds and more 
But Glauthier is only one of eight "green energy" stimulus authors that have directly financially benefited from that massive legislation and its $80 billion in clean-energy spending  –– a group that consists of three very powerful special interest groups, whose members and affiliates struck stimulus gold. Adding to this list is two major firms that had direct corporate influence, as well as five individuals that maintain(ed) political access and influence inside the Obama White House.

Thus far, I've exposed seven who helped craft energy portions of the 2009-Recovery Act –– you know the president's trillion-dollar stimulus spending spree, which was sold to the American people as a means to save our economy from the brink of disaster and create jobs. However, "2012 revelations" reveal that the stimulus was about implementing the Obama agenda –– "a key tool for advancing clean-energy goals and fulfilling a number of campaign commitments."

I'm moving as swiftly as possible in order to complete this bombshell post, of which I've been gathering research on for years: "The RAT in the Recovery and the Gang of Eight." With seven down, there is still one left to expose, unless during the course of my research, I stumble upon more. McBee Strategic Consulting, of which Tim Carney of the Washington Examiner, in March of 2011 had this to say, "K Street is the epicenter of this green-industrial complex, and ground zero might be the firm founded by Democratic revolving-door earmark lobbyist Steve McBee, who reportedly wrote key provisions in the stimulus bill to open the spigot of green corporate welfare."

Once I get through that explosive post, I'll do a recap of each, while divulging the RAT at that time, however, I will most likely prepare Part Two of this post, "Obama's Biofuel Buddies Rake in Big Green Bucks."

Thanks for reading yet another Green Corruption File, with much more in the works. ––Christine. 

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Nuclear Disaster: $10.33 billion in energy loans pressured by the White House and POTUS approved, now at risk

On Friday October 26, 2012, President Obama told a local Denver, Colorado news anchor that decisions made in the loan program office are “decisions, by the way, that are made by the Department of Energy, they have nothing to do with politics.” 

Photo courtesy of the Depart of Energy 
Southern Company’s Vogtle Project Subsidized with $8.33 Billion of Taxpayer Money: Pressured by the White House 

But let’s go back to the past: on Tuesday, December 1, 2009, Loan Program Office (LPO) contractor Paul Barbian sent an email to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) analyst Kelly Colyar, James C. McCrea, Senior Credit Advisor of the Loan Programs, as well as other DOE Officials.
With a subject line of “Vogtle: Deadline set by Secretary, Barbian writes, “Nick Whitcombe called me a few minutes ago (7:00 PM eastern). He told me that Dave Franz, Susan Richardson, and he had been called to the Secretary’s office and told to “agree” to the term sheet with OPC by Friday, Dec. 4, and to agree to the term sheet with MEAG by Dec 9. The time pressure is coming from the White House, according to Nick." Note: The DOE Official is Nicholas Whitcombe, the former Acting Director of the Advanced Technologies Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program (ATVM).
This particular email was released by the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform on October 31, 2012, which was accompanied by a summary memorandum and other material that contradicts the president's claim that "decisions" were made solely by the Department of Energy (DOE). In fact this is not the only case where the White House, President Obama as well as Vice President Joe Biden were actively involved in the DOE deal making –– a bombshell part of the Green Corruption Scandal that despite the fact that it was ignored by the media, Marita Noon and I immediately broke this story on November 1, 2012. Our headline read Emails Catch White House Lie on Green-Energy Loans, whereas I personally read and studied over 150 emails, which revealed a series of questionable practices, including coercion, cronyism, and cover ups.

In February 2010, "the Department of Energy offered a conditional commitment for an $8.33 billion loan guarantee to support the construction of the nation’s next generation of advanced nuclear reactors," referred to as The Vogtle Project. This loan guarantee was offered to Southern Company and its partners [Georgia Power Company, Oglethorpe Power Corporation (OPC), and the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia (MEAG)] to build two nuclear reactors in Georgia, but according to recent reports, "the award has yet to be finalized.”

Eleven days ago I discovered that the Vogtle Project is in worse shape than I had documented this past May, adding to a long list of Obama’s taxpayer-funded clean-energy failures, of which we've tracked more than 50, with at least half bankrupt. On July 2, 2013, “Taxpayers for Common Sense released a report that pointed to Southern Company as the next project with potential to blow up in the federal government's face,” documented Kevin Glass at The Daily Caller.

According to this report: DOE Loan Guarantee Program: Vogtle Reactors 3&4, “On top of construction delays and litigation, the oversight and management of the construction of reactors 3&4 has been questionable." The report goes on, “As a result of the escalating construction costs of the Vogtle facility, most financial rating agencies are downgrading their assessment of the partners involved in the project.”

Since the February 2010 DOE proposal, Taxpayers for Common Sense notes that...
 ...In June 2010, the project partners accepted DOE’s offer. Since then, the Department of Energy has extended its $8.33 billion loan guarantee offer multiple times. Worse, “documents obtained through the Freedom of Information Act after years of effort reveal wide-ranging negotiations between the Office of Budget and Management, Department of Treasury, and the Department of Energy on what the appropriate credit subsidy costs should be. Years of closed-door negotiations have allowed loan guarantee partners to craft a deal that heavily benefits them and exposes taxpayers to even greater risk.
What I can also divulge from that Halloween email dump regarding this particular project is that on Wednesday, June 9, 2010 there was a meeting with Peter Orsag (former Director of the Office of Management and Budget) and Carol Browner (Al Gore's crony and former Climate Czar, now at the Center for American Progress, another huge player in this green energy scheme), which was requested by OMB and DOE “to work through issues that come up in the Loan Programs.”

Former DOE Loan Advisor Jonathan Silver and Chris Otness, Assistant at the Loan Programs Office, prepared the briefing, and it included a few familiar projects like Abengoa, Blue Mountain, and UniStar. However what struck me as odd is that OH Rep Democrat Dennis Kucinich –– a member of the House Oversight Committee, and as I reported last July, adores Mr. Silver, and has been adamant that there is NO DOE scandal –– is found on page seven of that meeting outline. Maybe Kucinich was looking out for taxpayers...
#4. Kucinich Update, ISSUE: "Peter Orsag and Rep. Kucinich met about two weeks ago to discuss the Congressman’s request for additional information on our credit scoring process and the specific numbers around Vogtle." After a few notes, this meeting outline ends with a RESPONSE: "DOE and OMB lawyers will talk this week to discuss next steps. Kuchinich's letter addressed to you on this topic is now closed per General Council's Office."
Sunday, Jan. 20, 2013. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Tim Carney: “Beneficiaries of Obama's policies bankroll inauguration” includes Southern Company

“Major corporations profiting from Obama policies [bankrolled] President Obama's official inaugural committee. While we know the names of the donors to Obama's inaugural, we don't know much more, because Obama is once again trampling his promises of transparency,” reported Tim Carney at the Washington Examiner this past January.

According to Carney, "Southern Co., one of the country's largest energy companies, gave $100,000 to the Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC)," and that “Southern Co. is the biggest beneficiary of Obama's push for loan guarantees for nuclear power plants, with an $8.3 billion guarantee in the works for a new Georgia plant” –– a main focus of this file.

Carney further notes, "Of course, this undermines Obama’s talk about battling the special interests and getting corporate money out of politics — again. But it’s interesting because of Southern’s relationship with the federal government, and Obama’s agenda on climate change." And it turns out that "Southern has received stimulus grants and other federal funds [part of the global warming push], adding up to over $825 million over the years, for smart grid, coal gasification, and carbon capture."

After a quick glance at, as of July 2013, the current amount is $826, 616, 524. While some of the transactions don't seem to match Southern's firm, the total is 135, and this figure includes some that predate the Obama administration. Yet what's startling is that this dollar amount is for federal grants alone –– free taxpayer money going to this giant energy company, the majority from the Department of Energy. 

Recently, the Institute for Energy Research (IER) took aim at the president's new climate agenda, which circumvents Congress and as stated by, "ambitiously seeks to control nearly every aspect of how Americans produce and consume energy." IER's issue in this case is that President Obama's "alleged all-of-the-above energy policy includes large taxpayer subsidies for so-called clean-coal technologies, including carbon capture and storage."

If you've been paying attention, and what the IER is referring to is that part the new climate plan includes Obama's proposed $8 billion in federal loan guarantees relating to "decarbonizing coal" –– fossil fuel technologies to reduce the country’s greenhouse gas emissions. It seems that even some "greenies" aren't too happy about this: "The proposal would fund schemes such as waste heat recovery and carbon dioxide capture, however it has unsurprisingly received criticism as it would draw focus away from green technology projects such as renewable energy and electric vehicles," wrote

Yet here we find another clean-energy failure, and begin to connect more cronyism dots.  Mississippi Power, a subsidiary of Southern Company, launched a project in 2010 (a 582-MW lignite-to-gas-to-electricity), which was subsidized with taxpayer money: $270 million grant from the Department of Energy and $133 million in investment tax credits approved by the IRS. The Kemper Power Plant–– complete with carbon capture –– according to the IER, was "once touted as a showcase for clean-coal technology, but is now officially a boondoggle."

Obviously, Southern Company benefited from the energy sector of the 2009-Recovery Act as well as past and potentially new clean-energy legislation, even raking in huge amounts of taxpayer money. And as they continue their huge lobbying presence, Southern has plenty of political power to ensure a victory at every turn, despite any risk to the American taxpayer.

Energy Giant, Southern Company: Heavy Hitter Lobbyist and Big Donor to Both Political Parties 

Taxpayers for Common Sense reported, “Last year, Southern Company spent far more than any other electric utility on lobbying the federal government, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. It spent $15,580,000 in 2012, or roughly $42,000 a day, in order to help strong arm a deal when their financials and the project all point to a bad investment for taxpayers.”

Labeled by Center for Responsive Politics as a “heavy hitter,” Southern Company, one of the nation’s biggest electric utilities, serving nearly 4 million customers in Alabama, Florida, Georgia and Mississippi, lobbying price tag has been close to that rate for many years. Furthermore, “46 out of 62 Southern's lobbyists in 2012 have previously held government jobs.”

Southern Company, through individuals, PACS, and their affiliates gives significantly more money to Republicans than Democrats, and in 2012 donated to both Mitt Romney ($51,350) as well as President Obama ($12,080), yet in 2008 they gave Senator Obama $25,752. And let's not forget, as recorded earlier in this post, that Southern also bankrolled President Obama's 2013 Inauguration.

While there are fourteen members of Congress (six Democrats and eight Republicans) that own shares of stock in Southern Co, one of the most notable stock holders is one of the richest members of Congress: Secretary of State John Kerry, whereas he has owned Southern stock  for a while –– with a dip in 2009, and as of 2011 the value listed is $1,001 to $15,000.

"For years, Kerry [a leader in the crusade against global warming] has invested millions in a number of green energy companies that have benefited from the president’s efforts to aggressively subsidize the industry with taxpayer dollars," wrote the Washington Free Beacon in 2012.

Meanwhile this past January, prior to Senator Kerry's promotion to Secretary of State, we unleashed my research: Climate Hawk Senator John Kerry and His Green Inside Deal, documenting Kerry's influence on the 2009-Recovery Act. More specifically he “played a key role in securing energy tax provision increases to include a long term extension of provisions that provide tax incentives for the production of renewable energy and tax credits for conservations.” However, it was Kerry's timely investments into the Venture Capital (VC) firm Kleiner Perkins, home of the climate change evangelists duo and President Obama's climate cronies: the mega rich John Doerr and Al Gore, who both enjoy political access and influence, and that made a killing on the stimulus package, which caused alarm for many of us.

More than fifty percent –– at least 36 of the 66 listed as of December 2012 –– within Kleiner Perkins  greentech portfolio have benefited from loans, grants, and special tax breaks, of which my December 2012 tally confirms that Kleiner Perkins raked in at least $1 billion in clean-energy government subsidies, the majority coming from 2009-Recovery Act –– a piece of legislation that both Kerry and Doerr participated in crating. Then if you factor in Kleiner Perkins' collaboration with Al Gore's London-based Generation Investment Management (GIM) that number increases significantly, putting the figure up to at least $10 billion from the taxpayer-funded Green Bank of Obama.

Kerry seems to average about twelve percent of his published assets in "energy & natural resources," and with a quick glance, besides Kleiner Perkins and Southern Company, we find that there are numerous large corporations that are tied to massive amounts of renewable energy funds (the "green") that was shoveled out of the 2000-Stimulus bill: such as BP, Bank of America, Citigroup, Exelon Corp, General Electric, and Google –– all TOP 2008 Obama donors, with a few again in 2012. However, we would have to analyze the timing on these stock transactions and dig further to make any future assumptions in regards to Kerry's green inside deals.

The $2 Billion French Nuclear DOE Deal: POTUS Approved

Even though we mostly cover green energy, my last post exposed a huge Nuclear Crime Story, which occurred under both the Bush and Obama administration’s watch, and today I'll continue with nuclear corruption, of which the Energy Department's loan program places in the clean-energy section. 

To get a better sense, it's important to understand that Section 1703 of Title XVII of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 "authorizes the U.S. Department of Energy to support innovative clean energy technologies that are typically unable to obtain conventional private financing due to high technology risks." These technologies include: "biomass, hydrogen, solar, wind/hydropower, nuclear, advanced fossil energy coal, carbon sequestration practices/technologies, electricity delivery and energy reliability, alternative fuel vehicles, industrial energy efficiency projects, and pollution control equipment."

Thus far the Obama administration, through the 1703, has awarded $10.33 billion for two projects: the France-based company AREVA, and Georgia Power (energy giant Southern Company), of which in November 2012, I had warned that they were both suspect for cronyism and corruption, and by the end of 2012, AREVA's Eagle Rock Enrichment facility made it on my 2012 Green Energy Failure Alert List (in the troubled category), and by May of this year, both were added to that same grouping. (NOTE: The asterisk is proven cronyism and corruption).
  • AREVA* –– $2 billion went to fund the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility (EREF) in Idaho Falls, ID, which is supposed to support 310 permanent jobs, with 1,000 temporary construction. While this agreement was confirmed in May 2010, as of May 2013 they are still struggling to get this project off the ground. 
  • Georgia Power Company* –– In February 2010, $8.33 billion was awarded for Plant Vogtle project to support 800 permanent and 3,500 temporary construction jobs. In May 2013, I found that they were still having financial issues, yet we can now confirm that it is much worse than I had reported.
In October 2012, I had made a big deal out AREVA, the French state-owned nuclear giant, due to the fact that they have an indirect connection to Doerr and Gore's VC firm Kleiner Perkins, and that we are enriching the French with American tax dollars. 

On February 8, 2010, Ausra Inc. –– a Kleiner Perkins investment that “develops and deploys utility-scale solar technologies,” also a GIM investment –– was acquired by AREVA. Plus Ausra, now AREVA Solar Inc. was awarded a $14 million 1603 grant for "solar electricity" in California two weeks later. Maybe not a smoking gun, but I have also noted the many issues surrounding this $2 billion DOE transaction, starting with the rumors of AREVA “suspending its Idaho uranium enrichment plant,” which circulated in late 2011, and that AREVA's CEO Luc Oursel did confirm: “the company has been hit by financial problems that will affect the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility and others worldwide.” Further, according to John Stossel's 2012 Green Energy Myth, “Shareholders of AREVA lost over 60% of their money in 2011." 

This past November, AREVA caught my attention again when I found more damning evidence in the House Oversight bombshell emails, implicating then-Energy Secretary Steven Chu and his commitment on the UniStar project (they were seeking an $8.7 billion DOE loan for their Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant) to Steny Hoyer when he was the House Majority Leader in 2010.

It turns out that EDF Group, "one of the leaders in the energy market in Europe" that snagged $204,986,935 of free taxpayer money  and AREVA, "ranked first in the global nuclear power industry" (both a tiny fraction of "Obama’s green outsourcing"), are both partners of UniStar Nuclear Energy. In full disclosure, so far, this $8.7B transaction seems to have been squashed, but not before emails that demonstrate a rushed process that was derailed by the 7th floor, and others.

This was a fast-tracked process imposed by President Obama, yet before Congressional Oversight hearings in 2012, it was denied by DOE Officials. Nevertheless, these emails proved that they used these "rushed" tactics to push through AREVA's transaction, and President Obama, despite what he told the American people prior to the 2012 election, was actively involved in many of the Energy Departments' deal making process, including AREVA’s $2 billion deal. 

In an email dated September 1, 2009, James C. McCrea, Senior Credit Advisor of the Loan Programs at the Department of Energy wrote, "Re the rushed process, I agree. What makes it far worse is that we are doing our analysis, preparing the term sheet etc. (not ETC!!) before the project has really gelled. In the commercial financial world, this transaction [AREVA] would not be ready for real financing discussion/term sheet preparation for at least a year." 

From an email dated March 1, 2010 from David Schmitzer, DOE LPO Director of Loan Origination to LPO Credit Advisor McCrea and others:
“Jonathan just said at our staff meeting that, opposite the message received on Thursday, AREVA is now a “go” (seems on Friday POTUS himself approved moving it ahead).”
From an email dated October 30, 2010 from DOE Loan Program Office (LPO) Credit Advisor Jim McCrea to LPO Executive Director Jonathan Silver: “I am growing increasingly worried about a fast track process imposed on us at the POTUS level based on this chaotic process that we are designing the fast track process and having it approved at the POTUS level (which is an absolute waste of his time!) it legitimizes every element and it becomes embedded like the 55% recovery rate which also was imposed by POTUS.”
Fast forward to today: this POTUS approved $2 billion loan may be at risk, because on May 23, 2013, the Associated Press announced, "French company won't set date for Idaho nuclear facility," noting that "work on the $3 billion Eagle Rock enrichment plant was meant to start in 2011. That was delayed to 2012, then 2013 and 2014. Now, AREVA says only that the facility remains a priority but that it would be imprudent to give a ground-breaking date amid unresolved talks with financing partners."

Department of Energy Loans: Halloween 2012 Emails Prove Participation and Pressure by the President

As we exposed on November 1, 2012, and since, these shocking emails and documents –– both Appendix I and the 350+ page Appendix II that the House Oversight Committee obtained from current and former DOE employees and contractors, many of which had been withheld by the Department of Energy for more than a year prior to their October 2012 release –– are a treasure trove of Intel. They prove that President Obama and the White House were actively involved in pressuring and participating in the approval process of these loans, whereas since 2009 they have spent $34.4 billion of taxpayer money, funding 33 projects. 

Throughout these email interactions we find plenty of references to the president, POTUS, the "7th floor," and "the Hill." There were even high-level meetings with Valerie Jarrett, "rahm," and Carol Browner –– just to name a few. On four projects: Abengoa, Abound, First Wind, and Beacon, email dated June 25, 2010, states, "DOE is moving with 'the fierce urgency of now,'" and references to "WH intervention" and "significant WH support." 

Besides email interactions that showed inter-fighting between the DOE, OMB and Treasury, and the fact that DOE Officials were trying to change the loan application policies in the middle of the process, these emails also exposed the cozy relationships DOE Officials had during the loan review process with loan applicants CEO's, lobbyists, and investors, etc. It's no surprise that they had meetings and calls with DOE Officials and Energy Secretary Chu, but there are documented meetings and calls with the president, VP, and WH as well as plenty of "green fraternizing" going on –– bike riding, coffee meetings, sleepovers, "beer summits," Al Gore parties, dinners, Democrat fundraisers, and so on.

The Energy Department’s Loan Guarantee Program (DOE LGP) has been a main focus throughout my work, and it’s worth repeating that it consist of three separate programs: Section 1703 (discussed above), Section 1705, and the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM). Both Section 1703 and the ATVM programs were established during the Bush administration, meanwhile, Section 1705 was created by the 2009-Recovery Act, the trillion-dollar spending bill that was touted as a means to save our economy and create jobs.

Needless to say –– gimmicks and hype aside, of which we have documented many times how the Obama administration has tracked their so-called green jobs –– if you take the DOE's own accounting in looking at just the 1703 and 1705 DOE loans you find that "renewable energy projects cost US taxpayers $26 billion for only 2,300 permanent jobs, which is $11.5 million per job," reported The American Enterprise Institute this past May.

Moreover, it should be noted that while we've been tracking the $100 billion renewable energy earmark tucked inside the trillion-dollar spending bill, known as the stimulus, and subsequent dirt that accompanied (including all of the DOE's loan power), there were additional stimulus funds that were appropriated to the Energy Department. This includes $11 billion for Grid Modernization, the $5 billion Home Weatherization Program, the $6 billion Nuclear Waste Clean Up, as well as $3.4 billion for carbon capture and sequestration demonstration projects, $2 billion for research into batteries for electric cars, $500 million for Green Jobs Training, and funds that went to various State Energy Programs, and so on. 

But there were other stimulus "created or saved" programs such as the 1603 Grant Program –– another green government giveaway that was created by the 2009-Recovery Act. The 1603 is administered by the Treasury Department where billions in favored-businesses are given tax-free cash gifts, of which as of the end of 2012, they recorded 8275 awards, totaling $15,964,130,442. This program was also touted as a jobs creator (saved and supported, not created), yet most of the so-called green job gains, if any, are temporary. Worse is that in 2012, we found out that Section 1603 grants for renewable energy does not even include job creation among its primary objectives.

Others impacted by the stimulus package were the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) and the Production Tax Credit (PTC) as well as the fact that the 2009-Recovery Act awarded the Office of Energy Efficiency (EERE) $16.8 billion for its programs and initiatives. And taxpayer-funded government agencies were also given "green initiative” money from the stimulus, who then dished it out their favored "green" projects. One example is the Environmental Protection Agency who in February 2009, "released $6 billion to individual states for clean water programs."

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Biorefinery Assistance Program, funded through the energy title of the farm bill, which was first introduced in 2002, also provides government-backed loan guarantees to support renewable energy, as they did with Range Fuels and others, since 2009 for about $1.02 billion. In the Range Fuels case, which received a $76 million federal loan from the Bush administration in 2007, and over $80 million from the Obama administration in 2009 ($46 million DOE grant and a $40 million USDA loan guarantee), eventually went bust in 2011.

Another means where huge corporations and Obama's green cronies get taxpayer money (corporate welfare and crony capitalism) is through the taxpayer-supported Export-Import Bank (Ex-Im), who "has a Congressional mandate to support renewable energy and has been directed that 10% of its authorizations should be dedicated to renewable energy and environmentally beneficial transactions." Two green energy failures come to mind here: First Solar and SolarWorld, who both enjoy key political connections, and snagged their "faire share" of stimulus funds. 

That being said, my quest to track President Obama's clean-energy funds (taxpayer money)  –– $100 billion from the stimulus as well as other green energy money that is being used to push through his massive and radical climate change agenda, while rewarding his allies, can be a difficult task. But what I can confirm is that The Green Corruption Files does provided the most comprehensive and current record of clean-energy failures as well as the dirt that accompanies: cronyism, corruption and criminality as well as waste, fraud and abuse.

Our 2012 Green Energy Failures tally was 52 –– 23 bankrupt and 29 troubled –– capturing the attention of The Daily Caller and many other conservative news outlets, even gracing the pages of Rush Limbaugh "letters." This past May, I revealed a new bankrupt list: 25 that have gone bust, with four about to go under. Stay tuned, as my new accounting is in the works with predictions of a new clean-energy failure that could hit 60. But for the sake of keeping my research organized and focused on today's feature, the Department of Energy's $34.4 billion, below I'm listing the Obama administration's clean-energy failures just from DOE's Loan Guarantee Program, which is three down, four about to go under and seven in trouble for various reasons, the majority financial. Ironically, just last month, Former Energy Secretary Chu told the San Francisco Chronicle in an interview to expect more green energy companies that got government-backed loan guarantees to go bankrupt. 

  1. Solyndra*: In September 2009 Solyndra, once the poster child for the president's clean energy initiative that is now art, received $535 million 1705 DOE loan and $25.1 million in California tax credit. Bankrupt: September 2011. What started as an unworthy investment, snagged a 2010 White House endorsement, only to become a PR nightmare that included a loan restructuring (an apparent violation of the law) and even a plot to hide their troubles from the 2010 midterm glare. Solyndra became a cautionary tale of sorts: a failed Obama green investment, one of the first to go kaput, unethical executive bonuses included, leaving in its wake FBI raids, and a trail of resignations and damning emails –– all evidence that President Obama's "clean" energy is dirty: The Green Corruption Scandal. But the Solyndra Saga (only the tip of iceberg) continues, because just this week, Reuters reported, "The founder of bankrupt solar panel maker Solyndra will likely avoid criminal charges even if charges are brought against other former executives of the company."
  2. Beacon Power*: In August 2010 they snagged a 1705 DOE loan for $43million. Additionally, Beacon received at least $25 million in grants from the DOE and the state of Pennsylvania for a 20-megawatt plant in that state, plus $2.2 million from the DOE's Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) –– created in 2007 under the Bush administration, whose funding was increased under the Obama administration. Bankrupt: October 2011
  3. Abound Solar*: Received part of a $60 million grant under the Bush administration, and in December 2010 was awarded a $400 million 1705 DOE loan under Obama. Additionally, Abound was awarded a $9.2 million loan from the Export-Import Bank in July 2011. Abound went down in June 2012 but "a Daily Caller News Foundation investigation revealed that Abound solar was selling faulty solar panels that routinely underperformed and even caught on fire. The company reportedly knew its panels were faulty prior to receiving taxpayer dollars and may have misled investors in order to keep the company afloat until federal aid came in," which by October 2012, prompted a criminal probe. Abound is still in the news, because not only did they rip off American taxpayers, they left a toxic waste dump –– hazardous material left behind in their Colorado facilities, but as of late, the clean up is almost complete.

On the Verge of Going BUST and BAILOUTS
 As of May 2013 with some current updates 
  1. SoloPower*: On April 1st I had ranted about SoloPower and its $197 million loan DOE "junk loan," from the stimulus-created 1705 program, and the fact that they also got $40 million from the State of Oregon. Additionally, "SoloPower also received a $20 million state tax credit, which it sold at a discount to other taxpayers in exchange for cash." Then on April 22, the Oregonian’s headline read: “SoloPower moves to power down Portland factory, gut remaining workforce.” But lo and behold, as I was preparing this post (July 10), the Oregononian reported that "SoloPower has defaulted on a $10 million loan," of which it seems that is one of the loans that came from the Oregon Department of Energy, marking this as another major setback and continued cloud hovering over this project as well as over $250 million in taxpayer money. 
  2. Nevada Geothermal Power Company, Inc.*: In September 2010, Nevada Geo was awarded a $98.5 million loan guarantee that came from the 1705 for the Blue Mountain project to build a geothermal power plant, plus $69 million in federal stimulus-funded grants. In October 2012, I noted that in July 2012, the Washington Times reported that the power at Nevada Geothermal (NGP) was dimming and may be the next green energy bankruptcy. At the end of September 2012, Bloomberg followed up: NGP "may transfer ownership to a lender after projecting the facility will produce less power than expected." And sure enough NRG's Blue Mountain got another bailout, as their first was from the Energy Department in 2010 when they approved this $98.5 million loan –– a fact we noted last summer when we covered Senator Harry Reid’s part in green-energy, crony-corruption. In April of this year, financial news reported that Blue Mountain had owed almost $200 million to its private lenders, and that NGP "has completed the sale of the Blue Mountain Geothermal Project to funds managed by EIG Global Energy Partners, LLC, the mezzanine lender for the project, pursuant to an equity and collateral transfer agreement." We'll have to check to see if they will be paying back the taxpayers, but they did get a makeover, and as of April 3, 2013 NGP changed its name to Alternative Earth Resources Inc.
  3. Fisker Automotive*: We covered the April 24, 2013 Congressional Hearing and Fisker's $529 million ATVM loan. And according to this past June, "Gov. Jack Markell gave Fisker a package of $21.5 million in state taxpayer grants and loans to come to Delaware and continues to cut checks for utility bills inside the Newport-area plant, which was shuttered by GM in 2009." Most are declaring that Fisker is about to crash, and a full report can be found in my post, Failing Fisker Auto Finally Faces House Oversight Hearing: Chairman Jordan Exposes Another DOE Junk Loan, Declares, "Fisker should have never received taxpayer money.” Meanwhile, Co-founder and Former Executive Chairman Henrik Fisker is circling the globe to figure out how to salvage Fisker Automotive, even collaborating with foreign tycoons. Hmm, it leaves one wondering what Al Gore is doing to save his auto investment.
  4. Vehicle Production Group (VPG)*: I was one of the few that covered VPG's March 2011 $50 million ATVM loan with ties to Obama bundler and "VP Hunter," the infamous Washington fixture, James A. Johnson, whose firm Perseus portfolio lists two more taxpayer-funded bankruptcies: Beacon Power and Evergreen Solar (also listed in this report). Then on May 9, the Hill reported, "A natural-gas van company [VPG] awarded a $50 million Energy Department (DOE) loan has suspended operations and laid off roughly 100 workers, according to press accounts."

As of October 2012, updated May 2013 and July 2013 
(with a full report in the works)
  1. AREVA* –– $2 billion via the 1703 to support the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility (EREF) in Idaho Falls, ID, which was the focus of this report and includes up-to-date data. 
  2. Georgia Power (Southern Company)* –– $8.33 billion via the 1703 for Plant Vogtle project, which was the focus of this report and includes up-to-date data. 
  3. NRG Energy, Inc. (BrightSource)* –– $1.6 billion loan guarantee from the 1705 (for the Ivanpah Solar Project), which is supposed to "enable BrightSource Energy and its partners—NRG and Google — to build the world’s largest solar thermal facility in the Mojave Desert. Many times we exposed the fact that this shady DOE $1.6 billion loan was a bailout, and how it had been plagued with financial issues and problems, including putting endangered desert tortoises at risk of being murdered.
  4. First Solar* is tied to $3 billion in 1705 DOE loans: the Exelon (Antelope Valley Solar Ranch, the NextEra Energy Resources, LLC (Desert Sunlight), and the NRG Solar, LLC (Agua Caliente). First Solar was also the recipient of a very suspicious Export-Import bank transaction. We documented The First Solar Swindle last summer, their financial woes, as well as the three projects listed here. Some additional work was added this year and can be found in my "Bank of Obama" and "Left-wing Billionaire George Soros: Obama’s Agent of Green" posts. However, in all fairness, it seems that First Solar is doing better, and on May 6, 2013, CNN Money predicted "Brighter days for First Solar." So there is a probability that I'll remove First Solar from this problematic list, however, we'll take a peek at our $3 billion of taxpayer money –– these three projects and whatever other funding they received.
  5. NextEra Energy Resources, LLC (Genesis Solar)* –– an $852 million partial loan guarantee (from the 1705) to support the development of the Genesis Solar Project, a 250 MW parabolic trough concentrating solar power (CSP) plant. In October 2012, I had documented Genesis' environmental issues, and they have endured massive flood damage. This past April, it was reported that their mirror manufacturer, Flagbeg Solar (another taxpayer subsidized green energy company) went bust, which could have a negative impact on this project. However, clouds still hover over this and other California solar projects –– and that's according to my personal local newspaper, the Desert Sun. But we'll keep and eye on this one, because spokesman for the Genesis project stated in April, that it is just over 43 percent complete, and the "project will come online in two phases, half at the end of 2013 and the other half in late 2014."
  6. SunPower Corp.* / NRG Solar (California Valley Solar Ranch) –– $1.2 billion loan guarantee from the 1705. Since NRG bought the CA Valley Solar Ranch in San Luis Obispo from SunPower, this mess was already documented in my October report, however, the project itself has faced its own environmental issues –– as in the fact that they have taken over the home "to 34 endangered and threatened species, as well as designated core habitat for three animals: the blunt-nosed leopard lizard, San Joaquin kit fox and giant kangaroo rat." We'll dig further into this one and report back.
  7. Nissan, which in January 2010 received $1.45 billion loan from the ATVM program, and part was to retool its Smyrna, Tennessee manufacturing facility for assembly of the all-electric LEAF vehicle. On November 15, 2012, the Detroit News reported, "Nissan Motor CEO Carlos Ghosn finally admitted the automaker will not meet its sales target for its all-electric Leaf — in another sign of the broad struggle of the electric vehicle industry." But it as of May 2013, it seems the Leaf is, at least, doing better than the Chevy Volt –– GM's (the $49.5 billion bailout) electric car that is experiencing its own share of dangers (engine compartment fires) and financial woes.
During the course of my research I discovered, and Marita Noon and I have chronicled in complete detail, that 90 percent of the Energy Department's loans have meaningful political ties to President Obama and other high-ranking Democrats –– Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid to five alone, meaning that we have proven cronyism and corruption*.  Political buddies which primarily comprise of Obama's campaign backers, bundlers, top donors as well as liberal allies. Adding to the mix are those with access and influence that have financially benefited from the stimulus package and its $90 billion of taxpayer funds, which includes members of the president's former Job Council; those that helped craft the 2009 Recovery Act; and at least a dozen inside the Energy Department. Throw in powerful left-wing organizations and billionaires; high-powered lobbyists and special interest groups as well as Wall Street, Big Corporations, Big Energy, Big Wind, and Big Venture Capitalists, and you'll discover that the scope and size of this clean-energy scheme is MASSIVE. 

Since April 2012, we’ve covered the majority of the "DOE's junk loans” that were steered to 26 projects, and we even tackled the ATVM program with its “Favored Five,” but we still have two more green-energy, crony-corruption stories to release from the 1705 Section:
  • Exelon (Antelope Valley Solar Ranch) –– Rating BBB- by Fitch; Sept 2011 for $646 million
  • Prologis (Project Amp) –– Rating BB by Fitch; Sept 2011, over $1.1 billion (or $1.4 billion)
Now, we can officially add Section 1703 of the DOE's Loan Guarantee Program to this massive and deceptive Green Corruption Scandal –– both the Eagle Rock Enrichment Facility and the Vogtle Project, of which their troubles have placed $10.33 billion of taxpayer money at risk, even as the Energy Department considers handing out billions more through the 1703 to favored, yet risky renewable energy projects.

Keep in mind that these two nuclear projects are in addition to the other five loan guarantees that are experiencing various difficulties documented in this post. Add in the three bankruptcies as well as the four that are about to go under, and that establishes that over 42 percent of the Energy Department's 33 projects ($34.4B) could ultimately be President Obama's new clean-energy failure statistic, and that's NOT factoring in other programs and agencies that have dished out billions of tax dollars to save the planet.


Two Women –– one Citizen & one Energy Columnist –– join forces on One Mission: to expose one chunk of the Green Corruption Scandal at a time.