Category Archives: Green Energy

Solar Panel Propaganda

Solar panels, touted by many to be a renewable energy panacea that will rid the planet of all those nasty coal-fired power plants, may be a bigger boondoggle than we already thought. We’ve already complained that they do not appear in many instances to provide a return in investment.

It now appears that the time they provide energy before replacement is required is dramatically less than claimed. Thus shortening not only the life of the panels and the electricity generated, but also reducing the return on investment.

If you listen to the mostly-Chinese manufacturers, solar panels work great. They can be expected to degrade about 0.5% a year. So that is how we build the economic models to finance, insure and subsidize the larger solar systems.

In the real world, we are just starting to find out how bogus many of those predictions are. The National Renewable Energy Laboratory says that panels can degrade as much as 4.5% a year. Or more. Put that in your pro forma and see what your banker and insurance agent — or Congressman — say about that.

While we see claims that average solar panels will last 25 to 30 years, the aforementioned claim of 0.5% per year means that solar panels should last an astounding 200 years (100% ÷ 0.5%). At the realistic rate of 4.5% per year they will only last about 22 years before replacement is needed (100% ÷ 4.5%), which is not even the 25 to 30 currently claimed by many and not even remotely close to 200 years.

It gets worse folks. They don’t only degrade, it appears they also can literally fall apart and it doesn’t take very long.

In Italy last year, “they discovered that after one year in the field, over 90% of the (solar panels) from a one megawatt project began to delaminate and ended up on the ground.”

That is a lot of wasted money. 90% down the tubes after being used for only one year. No return on investment and very little ‘free’ electricity generated. All that is left is an eyesore that is a pile of toxic waste, wasted tax dollars and perhaps a tax deduction for a business loss.

We are adverse to the lies about what renewable energy costs and what it’s capabilities are. We’re also adverse to the physical and financial messes left when solar and wind-power are abandoned. We’re extremely adverse to the rush to install solar and wind-power without having full knowledge about the effects. Look at the carnage left in the previous two links to see what we’re talking about.

California seems to be leading the rush off the proverbial cliff via the implementation of AB32, California’s cap & trade law, that mandates power providers to generate 33% of their power from renewable (green) sources by a not too distant 2020.

With many large solar projects planned in California, it would seem to be a logical move to slow down and find out what our money is being spent on and what the return on investment will be as opposed to rushing in head first, only to find another government mandated, costly boondoggle. To know what happens to government mandated boondoggles one only has to look at the Solyndra and Evergreen Solar fiascos.

You can safely bet that when these solar energy plants fall apart at the seams, the taxpayers and energy consumers of California and other states will get stuck paying for the bill. It’s probably also a safe bet that the messes left at abandoned solar and wind farms will be there for decades as a reminder of what happens when the government gets involved in what should be private enterprise.

Source: AOL Energy

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Solargate: Let the excuses begin!

$527 Million Tax Dollars Down the Tubes?

We have barely heard that the Solyndra executives testifying before Congress will invoke the 5th Amendment and we already have propaganda being put forth by Solyndra.

In announcing that Solyndra executives would invoke their Fifth Amendment rights when they appear before Congress this week, a spokesman for the bankrupt solar energy company laid the blame for its demise at the feet of the same Department of Energy that invested $527 million into the failed enterprise.

Sure folks, the same agency that gave Solyndra $527 million when they probably shouldn’t have are now the same agency who pulled in their horns when asked to guarantee more investors and caused Solyndra to shut down and file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Come on now, you can’t have it both ways!

Lets hear what Representative Henry Waxman (D-CA) has to say about Solyndra.

I’m particularly concerned because the CEO of Solyndra met with me in July and said they were doing very well economically, they were going to double their revenues. Then a month later they declared bankruptcy. That makes me wonder what kind of misrepresentation they might have made to the administration.”

Misrepresentation sounds too nice to me, but I guess Representative Waxman wants to investigate more to see if he should be using the term fraud or not.

It will be interesting to see if anything turns up at the hearing besides I’ll take the 5th Amendment for $527 million Alex.

Yes more CO2 Insanity, something that seems to almost be akin to perpetual BS motion.

Source: New York Times 

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Solargate: Solyndra execs will take the 5th Amendment

$535 Million Tax Dollars Down the Tubes?

In a what doesn’t surprise me in the least move, Solyndra executives have announced they will be taking their 5th Amendment right when testifying before Congress this week. For those unaware, below is the 5th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.

No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.

While I’m not one of their attorneys, I’d suspicion the part highlighted above is what they’re referring to. This could mean that they have done something illegal and won’t be ratting on themselves before Congress, or perhaps they could be using this to cover for others involved with Solyndra, or both. In either event I find it very reminiscent of testimony by alleged Mafia members during Congressional hearings in the 1950’s and 1960’s.

I’d say you can rule out Attorney General Eric Holder doing anything about this because it certainly appears that, based upon e-mails made public, that Solargate at the very least will lead to some Obama Administration officials and potentially it could even lead to President Obama.

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Solargate: Solyndra Private Investors Get Paid Back Before Taxpayers

In addition to all the other problems surrounding Solyndra,  we now get even more stupidification, also known as the taxpayers get screwed again. According to Associated Press:

 The Obama administration restructured a half-billion dollar federal loan to a troubled solar energy company in such a way that private investors – including a fundraiser for President Barack Obama – moved ahead of taxpayers for repayment in case of a default, government records show.

Gee, talk about covering your buddies asses at the taxpayers expense, this is it. Why should the taxpayers take a back seat to Obama’s buddies? I also mention stupidification because of the next statement:

Administration officials defended the loan restructuring, saying that without an infusion of cash earlier this year, solar panel maker Solyndra Inc. would likely have faced immediate bankruptcy, putting more than 1,000 people out of work.

Now, please tell me who came up with this brilliant idea? The reality is that if Solyndra had been allowed to go bankrupt, like it should have to begin with, the taxpayers wouldn’t be stuck for $535 million dollars. Restructuring the loan to save a whopping 1,000 or so jobs for such a short time was braindead. It would have been much cheaper to use some common sense and let Solyndra fold.

Heads should roll, people should probably be jailed,  but we all know that probably won’t happen and if any do roll, it will most likely be some lower echelon government employee who becomes the sacrificial lamb.

You can read more of the Gore-y details by clicking on the source below.

Source: Associated Press

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Solargate: FBI executing search warrant at Solyndra

There is a new turn in the Solyndra debacle this morning. It is being reported by papers, radio and TV that the FBI is executing a search warrant at Solyndra and the Inspector General at the Department of Energy is also involved.

No word on what they’re looking for but I would suspicion it has to do with the $500+ million in loan guarantees provided by the government and Solyndra’s sudden closure last week, laying off about 1,000 employees without notice.

It makes me also wonder if there are any plans to do a search at Oklahoma billionaire George Kaiser’s place as he is the majority owner of Solyndra, who is reported to be a large fund-raiser for Obama in 2008 and who was possibly instrumental in getting Solyndra the loan guarantees.

Update 1: This now has me wondering what exactly is going on.  Is this a raid to get evidence for a possible prosecution? Or, is this a raid to remove evidence that may come back and haunt the Obama administration? The way things are going these days (Operation Gun Runner and Operation Fast & Furious), I certainly would not be surprised if this turned out to be some move by Attorney General Eric Holder to sanitize things for the President. Reelection is coming up you know.

More later as things develop.

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Solargate: Solyndra Bankruptcy Announcement

Solyndra Suspends Operations to Evaluate Reorganization Options

FREMONT, Calif., August 31, 2011 – Solyndra LLC, the American manufacturer of innovative cylindrical solar systems for commercial rooftops today announced that global economic and solar industry market conditions have forced the Company to suspend its manufacturing operations. Solyndra intends to file a petition for relief under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code while it evaluates options, including a sale of the business and licensing of its advanced CIGS technology and manufacturing expertise.  As a result of the suspension of operations approximately 1,100 full-time and temporary employees are being laid off effective immediately.

Despite strong growth in the first half of 2011 and traction in North America with a number of orders for very large commercial rooftops, Solyndra could not achieve full-scale operations rapidly enough to compete in the near term with the resources of larger foreign manufacturers.  This competitive challenge was exacerbated by a global oversupply of solar panels and a severe compression of prices that in part resulted from uncertainty in governmental incentive programs in Europe and the decline in credit markets that finance solar systems.

“We are incredibly proud of our employees, and we would like to thank our investors, channel partners, customers and suppliers, for the years of support that allowed us to bring our innovative technology to market.  Distributed rooftop solar power makes sense, and our customers clearly recognize the advantages of Solyndra systems,” said Solyndra’s president and CEO, Brian Harrison.  “Regulatory and policy uncertainties in recent months created significant near-term excess supply and price erosion.  Raising incremental capital in this environment was not possible.  This was an unexpected outcome and is most unfortunate.”

Customers who have implemented Solyndra solutions can be assured that their systems will generate economical, clean, solar power for decades.

###

Contact:  Dave Miller, Director Corporate Communications (510) 440-2979.

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Solargate: Update – Solyndra to Lay off 1,100 and file Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

Just heard on KCBS, San Francisco, California. Solyndra to lay off 1,100 workers and file Chapter 11 Bankruptcy.

From Gigacom:

“Solyndra LLC, the American manufacturer of innovative cylindrical solar systems for commercial rooftops today announced that global economic and solar industry market conditions have forced the Company to suspend its manufacturing operations,” the company said in a statement.

So, back to that $534 million federal loan guarantee. Will the taxpayers get stiffed? Will anyone be prosecuted?0 Remember, the ex-CEO is a Obama buddy, so I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for any action.

I’d call this another Obama downgrade and another green jobs fail for Governor Jerry Brown, ex-Governor Schwarzenegger and the state of California.

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Solargate: Solyndra to close?

DOA ?

UPDATE: Just heard on the radio that Solyndra is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and will lay off 1,100 employees, essentially their entire workforce.

Yesterday I questioned what’s going on in the solar industry and picked Solyndra as a potential candidate to close its doors since it’s losing titanic amounts of money.

I wasn’t off the mark at all. This morning, it sounds that Solyndra may announce it’s closing its doors. According to KTVU Channel 2 News in Oakland, California this morning, employees are being laid off and given unemployment packets. Today, I again wonder if they’ll now file bankruptcy and take their manufacturing to China like Evergreen Solar of Massachusetts?

The Street reports:

U.S. solar company Solyndra, which once had dreams of a big IPO, is headed into bankruptcy.

A analyst in the solar market said an announcement from the embattled U.S. solar company was imminent, expected at noon on Wednesday, after speaking with an employee of the firm in Europe, where all employees were told on Wednesday that they were being let go.

A local Bay Area NBC affiliate also posted a report saying doors of a Solyndra California location had been shuttered and quoted employees as saying the company was finished.

KRON TV in San Francisco, California,  is also now reporting live that workers are getting pink slips and are getting ready to attend a meeting inside Solyndra HQ to hear about what is happening.

No wonder the CEO resigned and appears to be hiding out. Now I wonder how much of that loan money and VC money he has stuffed in his bank accounts and what will happen to it? After visiting this plant and touting green jobs I wonder what President Obama will  have to say about this? He’ll probably remain silent and play golf or go on another vacation.

That’s $535 million of your tax dollars thrown out the window by President Obama. That’s what the federal loan guarantee was and no doubt Solyndra won’t be able to make good on it. With things like this it’s no wonder we need to increase the federal debt limit.

As for Jerry Brown and Arnold Schwarzenegger, who have been touting all these wonderful green jobs in California, here’s another massive green jobs fail for you. Now California will again get to blow more money on unemployment checks instead of raking in tax dollars. Their sub-contractors will no doubt be laying off their people next and the city of  Fremont, California, will not be getting any revenue from this bad deal either. There will now be two Solyndra building that will be empty or almost empty sitting beside Highway 880 in Fremont.

Want to bet no one goes to jail over this? I hope Congress takes a hard look at this. Yet more CO2 Insanity of the expensive kind.

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Solargate: How much longer will Solyndra (and others) be around?

Another solar company flop?

I’ve ragged about Solyndra before. There’s weird stuff going on with this company who even after obtaining a $535 million government loan guarantee and venture capital funds has suffered the inability to go public. They had to lay off employees and shut down one facility immediately after California’s Prop 25 initiative failed (the one that would have neutered California’s global warming law AB32). They’re now being investigated by Congress  (House Energy and Commerce Committee) and their CEO recently bailed out. All in all it doesn’t appear to be a pretty picture for Solyndra, California,  or their green jobs poster boy Governor Jerry Brown.

Wall Street Pit has some pretty damning information not only about Solyndra but the solar industry in general:

Solar stocks have been a terrible investment over the past few years. Some of the big public names have been hammered.

FSLR – First Solar = -65%
LDK – LDK Solar = -88%
ESLR – Evergreen Solar = -100%
SPWR – SunPower = -88%

Regarding their failed IPO:

What was in the prospectus wass (sic), no doubt, the real reason that investor chose to take a ‘pass’ on the deal. There were revenue/expense numbers for the nine months preceding the proposed deal:

Revenue: $58.8mm
Cost of Goods Sold: $108.0mm

That is an absolute complete disaster. This is a low margin business to begin with. At Solyndra they were losing 84 cents for every dollar of sales.

Based on that and the rest of what’s in this article about Solyndra, one has to wonder how much longer they’ll be in business. Will they do what Evergreen Solar did and move their operations to China and then file bankruptcy to get out of their massive debt in the United States?

Or, will some other state offer them greener pastures like these two companies, who couldn’t get away from California’s high taxes, business stifling  regulations, congestion, high housing and labor costs fast enough.

Sooner or later reality has to hit the people who think solar and wind provide magic free electricity. Until then it’s more CO2 Insanity.

Source:  Wall Street Pit

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Costco isn’t getting a charge out of EV’s

In another blow to EV’s (electric vehicles) COSTCO has decided to remove all the electric vehicle chargers at their stores.

“We were early supporters of electric cars, going back as far as 15 years. But nobody ever uses them,” said Dennis Hoover, the general manager for Costco in northern California, in a telephone interview. “At our Folsom store, the manager said he hadn’t seen anybody using the E.V. charging in a full year. At our store in Vacaville, where we had six chargers, one person plugged in once a week.”

Mr. Hoover said that E.V. charging was “very inefficient and not productive” for the retailer. “The bottom line is that there are a lot of other ways to be green,” he said. “We have five million members in the region, and just a handful of people are using these devices.”

Evidently COSTCO thought they’d attract customers by putting in EV chargers and it went kerfloppin. It’s apparent even in California, the Greentard state, very few are charging their EV’s up even when it’s free.

EV sales make it apparent why no one’s using the chargers.  According to New American:

The Volt is currently leading the electric car battlefront in North American sales, but a mere 2,029 units have been sold since the Volt’s late 2010 launch. The Nissan Leaf trails behind with only 1,044 units sold.

Divide the total 3,033 units by 50 states and that’s a measly 61 cars per state. I call that evidence not many are biting the EV apple.

Source: NY Times

 

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