House Energy Subcommittee Votes to Cut DOE Loan Guarantee Program

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Power Engineering Magazine

The U.S. House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power voted 14-6 to pass the so-called “No More Solyndras Act” aimed at curtailing the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) loan guarantee program.

The legislation was co-authored by committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Cliff Stearns (R-FL). It would prevent the DOE from issuing loan guarantees on applications received after the end of 2011, and sets new restrictions on existing applications and loans, according to The Hill.

The bill was named for failed rooftop solar manufacturer Solyndra, which received a $535 million loan guarantee from the DOE in 2009 but filed for bankruptcy in August 2011. The DOE said in a blog that the company’s failure was in part due to lower subsidies for solar cells in Europe that led to a 25 percent drop in solar panel prices. Four other solar manufacturers have filed for bankruptcy as well, but not all of them received loan guarantees from the DOE.

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