Wednesday, April 4, 2012

For the Record: "No DOE Funding Went to the Solar Trust Blythe PV Project"

If folks want to beat up on our constitutional scholar, Nobel Laureate President they'll need to find another club.
(and no, I'm not talking about Donald Trump)

From Greentech:
It’s not a pretty picture, but contrary to alarmists, Blythe is not “another Solyndra.”
Everyone views the world through their owns lens and those distortions shape how we interpret the world and the news.
So when a large solar entity like Solar Trust, which was involved with the troubled Blythe Solar Power Project, goes bankrupt -- people and pundits react from their gut and not their mind.

Yes, in April of 2011, Solar Trust was offered a $2.1 billion conditional loan guarantee from the DOE for a 1,000 megawatt concentrated solar power plant.

But in August of 2011, Solar Trust said it would convert the solar thermal power plant it had been planning in Blythe, California into a plant constructed from photovoltaic (PV) panels. Blythe is about 200 miles west of Los Angeles. The shift came because of "improved market conditions" for building power plants with PV modules. Solar panel prices were dropping then and they are dropping now, leveling out at sub-$1.00 per watt prices from tier one suppliers.

The switch meant that the company had to walk away from a $2.1 billion federal loan guarantee. "Improved conditions for solar PV projects in the commercial bank market made pursuing commercial financing a more attractive strategy at this time," Edward Sullivan, Solar Trust's vice president of communications and external affairs, said in an email with Electric Utility Week.

To repeat, as the company reported in a statement, "Contrary to inaccurate media reports, no taxpayer funds were loaned to Solar Trust of America. The company withdrew from the Department of Energy’s Loan Guarantee Program in August 2011 foregoing any government funding for the Blythe Solar Power Project."...MORE