Obama Administration Fueling Friends and Failure: At least $10 billion of taxpayer money blown on ‘green’ cars, NOT so ‘green’

President Obama’s costly “green car revolution,” which began in 2008 when he “predicted that green cars would create thousands of new U.S. jobs as demand soared,” was recently slammed with a double whammy.

Unfortunately, the “green car” demand has not risen as planned –– and we’ll get to those jobs later. In fact, over two weeks ago, this headline emerged: “Obama’s prediction of a million electric cars on road by 2015 [is] off by 72%.”

CNS News reminds us that, in his 2011 State of the Union Address, President Obama also forecasted that the U.S. would have “a million electric vehicles on the road by 2015.”

Even with all the “green” government spending and free taxpayer help, we’re barely one-quarter over that million marker:

Despite massive federal spending on electric vehicles, which is expected to total $7.9 billion through 2019, there are currently just 286,390 plug-in vehicles on the nation’s roads today, according to the Electric Drive Transportation Association (EDTA).

Despite steep discounts, manufacturers’ rebates, federal and state tax credits, and even special utility rates in some areas, plug-in electric vehicles accounted for just 3.5 percent of the more than 16.4 million light vehicles sold in the U.S. in 2014, according to EDTA.

It turns out too, that according to Yahoo Finance, “The bestselling EV in the US is the Nissan Leaf [covered in more detail later]. About 30,000 were sold in 2014. Respectable. But also a 0.18% share of the 17 million vehicles that were sold in total last year” –– adding that “all the signs point toward electric cars being in for a rough 2015.”


Despite the dim news on electric cars, that may not be the worst of it, because last December, a new study emerged, placing another damper on the Obama administration’s climate change agenda.

Well, “your all-electric vehicle may NOT be so green” after all –– and that’s according to NBC News:

People who own all-electric cars in places where coal generates the power are actually making the air dirtier, according to a new study. The key is the electricity’s source. If it comes from coal, the electric cars produce 3.6 times more soot and smog deaths than gas, because of the pollution made in generating the electricity, according to the study published [December 15, 2014] by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The study examines environmental costs for cars’ entire life cycle, including where power comes from and the environmental effects of building batteries…

The study finds that overall, all-electric vehicles cause 86 percent more deaths from air pollution than do cars powered by regular gasoline. But if natural gas produces the electricity? Half as many deaths as gasoline cars. Wind, water or wave energy? One-quarter. Hybrids and diesel engines are also cleaner than gas. But ethanol isn’t, with 80 percent more deaths.

Electric Cars 

As the debate rages on between the many reasons that coal is a good energy source to others warning that coal is extremely bad, even causing massive global warming impact, there is no dispute over the fact that coal “is the largest domestically produced source of energy in America and is used to generate a significant chunk of our nation’s electricity”–– even those electric cars being pushed and funded by the Obama administration.

Still, whether you are for or against coal, your all-electric vehicle may be more harmful to the environment than a gasoline fueled one.

Oh oh.

I wonder how the president squares all that in his “green Petri dish” –– along with his “war on coal.” Actually, it’s a much bigger battle, as documented at Forbes in Robert Bradley Jr.’s piece, “President Obama’s Three-Front War On Energy,” which includes oil, coal, and even natural gas.

These developments add to the long list of electric car distress. Remember back in 2013, when three Tesla Motors Model S electric cars caught fire after their lithium-ion battery packs were damaged?

MIT Technology Review also added the following:

Even so, the incidents have drawn attention to the safety of the batteries used in electric vehicles (see “Early Data Suggests Collision-Caused Fires Are More Frequent in the Tesla Model S than Conventional Cars”). They are also just the latest examples of lithium-ion battery fires in electric vehicles — we’ve seen fires with the Chevy Volt and Fisker Karma plug-in vehicles. Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner was grounded because of problems with its new lithium-ion batteries.

I’ll get to Tesla, Fisker and the Chevy Volt later, but what’s interesting to note is at that time (November 2013), “the feds” opened up a formal probe into Tesla electric car fires, however, it seems that in March 2014, Tesla, the billionaire’s federal government-funded green car company, announced that it had “added three underbody shields to
the Model S to further protect the electric car’s battery from impacts.”

Oh, and the federal government “closed its investigation of battery fires in the car without pushing for a recall.”

Hybrid Cars

Besides all that, there are also concerns over the cost and distance of electric cars.

So what about the Hybrid gas-electric vehicles?

Well, hybrid cars carry their own eco-problems: they too, are NOT so “green or clean” for our environment and our health. 
“The production that is needed to make a hybrid battery is as environmentally unfriendly as it gets,” proclaimed a writer at the GoldenGateXpress.org. 

In my journey to learn more about hybrid cars, I found this 2008 article by John Fuller (How Stuff Works), which, again, places the blame on the batteries:

The batteries in hybrid cars are responsible for the better fuel economy that’s become central to the technology. They power the electric motor, which typically propels a hybrid car at lower speeds. This puts less pressure on the gasoline engine and stretches out the amount of fuel a vehicle burns in between trips to the gas station. 

But the chemical material that makes up all car batteries, whether it’s a conventional car or a hybrid, is typically toxic… 

There are three major types of batteries that companies use or are considering for use in hybrid cars: lead-acid, nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) and lithium-ion (Li-ion)…  

Well, all three –– Lead, Nickel, and Lithium –– and some say, in that order, are bad. 

Even as lithium batteries, which many claim are the “cleanest,” now dominate the “green car” market –– both all-electric and hybrid automobiles –– studies have emerged on their toxicity.

First, in June 2013, the Daily Tech, in analyzing the “Study: Lithium-Ion Batteries Can Impact Environment, Health Negatively,” states the following: 

A new study shows that lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles could have negative health and environmental impacts…

The study also found that the electricity grids for charging lithium-ion batteries contribute to global warming and other environmental and health impacts…

Second, in a May 2013 study by Environmental Science and Technology, entitled “Potential Environmental and Human Health Impacts of Rechargeable Lithium Batteries in Electronic Waste,” the authors conclude as follows:

Results of this research indicate that rechargeable lithium based batteries associated with portable electronic products are potential sources of hazardous metal pollutants in the environment. These metal pollutants can adversely impact environmental quality and human health, particularly in regions of the world that lack infrastructure for solid waste collection, sorting, and recycling…

Moreover, environmentalists and those pimping “green cars” as part of the climate change cry, must consider the “carbon footprint” found in the chain.

Where the lithium cam from (Earth); how it’s processed for battery use (not good); how it gets to a battery plant (via plane, train, truck and boat –– all using fossil fuels); what kind of carbon footprint each of the battery plants carry themselves; how these lithium batteries are charged (using electricity that comes from coal); and lastly, once dead, where do these car batteries end up?

This brings me to another key question: “How long will an electric car’s battery last?”

According to HybridCars.com, “Typically it’s eight years, and mileage is usually at least 100,000 miles.” 

And while it’s been reported that “Lithium Ion Batteries Can’t Stand the Heat,” they are not cheap to replace either: “Lithium batteries for electric cars can go for anywhere between $500 and $650…”

Ethanol 

What about ethanol fueling our cars?

Again, as mentioned in regards to that December 2014 study by Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, it turns out that “ethanol isn’t so green, either.”

Even the Associated Press shared some of the dirty details:

“It’s kind of hard to beat gasoline” for public and environmental health, said study co-author Julian Marshall, an engineering professor at the University of Minnesota. “A lot of the technologies that we think of as being clean … are not better than gasoline.”

Hybrids and diesel engines are cleaner than gas, causing fewer air pollution deaths and spewing less heat-trapping gas.

But ethanol isn’t, with 80 percent more air pollution mortality, according to the study. 

“If we’re using ethanol for environmental benefits, for air quality and climate change, we’re going down the wrong path,” study co-author Jason Hill added.

And we are…

According to the US Energy Department: 

Most of the gasoline sold in the U.S. contains up to 10% ethanol — the amount varies by region — and all auto manufacturers approve blends up to E10 in their gasoline vehicles.

As of 2011, EPA began allowing the use of E15 in model year 2001 and newer gasoline vehicles…

Ethanol, as most know, is a renewable, domestically produced alcohol fuel made from plant material, such as corn, sugar cane, or grasses, of which the DOE claims, “Using ethanol can reduce oil dependence and greenhouse gas emissions.”

Besides the study cited above, there are others that will dispute the DOE’s claim. And, some will even argue that ethanol “can ruin car engines, it’s bad for the environment, and it raises taxes, gas and food prices.” Nevertheless, that hasn’t stopped the Obama administration from continuing to dump millions of tax dollars into this fuel source –– all as part of their climate change agenda.

How Much Has President Obama’s “Green Car Revolution” Costs U.S. Taxpayers? 

First, let’s rehash the fact that electric cars have been touted by the White House for years. In light of these revelations, one wonders if the Obama administration got the memos, because reports estimate that “since 2009, electric cars have gotten about $5 billion in U.S. grants, loans and tax incentives” –– and now we see that federal spending will exceed $7.9 billion through 2019.



That’s one million of air polluting, death mobiles, destroying our Earth –– all at the helm of a president that pledged both terms to “save the planet.”

However, while those following the green energy industry have known about these unfriendly environmental facts, most Americans –– especially those of us paying taxes –– don’t know is that the $5B figure is much higher if you count all the money this administration has spent on “green cars”  –– electric and hybrid as well as the ethanol used as fuel for our automobiles.

The cost to American taxpayers is at least $10 billion on “green cars” that are “NOT so green,” which is the subject matter of today’s Green Corruption File
that will be providing some old data (cronyism and crashes), but also will expose new details and deals. Either way: nowhere else will you
find a more thorough expose’. 

Still, that (my) $10B figure doesn’t include the tax incentives or other government programs run by this administration, which is also doling out “green car cash.”

And, if you factor in the “green fuel” ideas such as ethanol and other biofuels, then that amount reaches approximately $12 billion… and counting. 

Here is a brief overview: 

  • $8.4 Billion was dished out of the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) loan program, which was established in Section 136 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 to support the production of fuel-efficient, advanced technology vehicles (ATVs) and qualifying components in the United States. To date, this loan program has funded five “green crony car deals,” two that have gone bust: Fisker Automotive ($529 million) and Vehicle Production Group ($50 million). Meanwhile, Tesla Motors repaid their $465 million loan early. While $5.9 billion went to Ford, which has launched an array of battery-based vehicles and Nissan, which markets the LEAF battery car, also received $1.4 billion in loans.
  • $2.4 billion went toward the “Electric Drive Battery and Component Manufacturing Initiative,” which is another DOE program created by the 2009-Recovery Act, and included $1.2 billion for battery cell and pack manufacturing facilities. This program also funded failures such as A123Systems ($249.1 million), EnerDel ($118.5 million), Smith Electric ($10 million) as well as GM’s all-electric Chevy Volt ($482 million) –– and, that’s just for starters.
  • Approximately $2 billion funded 30 potentially risky biofuel projects, including advanced biofuels, which is consider a high-risk investment. These funds, which included ethanol, algae, and more, came from two sources and were awarded to friends of the president and other Democrats.
    1. Department of Energy funded 19 biofuel projects worth $600 million, of which the monies came from the 2009 stimulus package
    2. Department of Agriculture, since 2009, dished out $1.02 billion loan guarantees to ten biofuel projects

Moreover, the Obama administration is revving up to disperse more “green car cash.” For example, the ATVM loan program (analyzed in detail next), is currently soliciting, and last month, the DOE allocated $55 million to advance fuel-efficient vehicle technologies –– which was touted this way: 

These technologies will play a key role in increasing fuel efficiency and reducing petroleum consumption, and support the Energy Department’s EV Everywhere Grand Challenge to make plug-in electric vehicles as affordable to own and operate as today’s gasoline-powered vehicles by 2022. 

Additionally, “The Federal Transit Authority (FTA) is spending $54.5 million to
purchase 60 electric buses and charging stations for public transit
systems across the country, costing taxpayers nearly $1 million per bus,” recently revealed the Washington Free Beacon.

The Beacon noted that “local transit authorities in California, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas will receive the electric buses,” and they also expose two key cronies found inside this green deal: CALSTART and Proterra.

What caught my attention was the latter –– of which The Beacon divulged this:

Seven of the 10 projects are providing millions to purchase Proterra battery-electric buses, which cost about $850,000.

Proterra, a clean bus company based in Greenville, S.C., is led by Ryan Popple, formerly the senior finance director for Tesla. The company spent $230,000 lobbying for transportation issues in 2014, and 4 out of 5 of its lobbyists have previously held government jobs, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.

Proterra Major Investors

What they didn’t catch in this latest green car (bus) story is that Proterra is an investment of the Venture Capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers (KPCB), where President Obama’s rich buddies John Doerr and Al Gore are partners –– and a firm that already scored billions in “green funds” from the Obama administration, including this company (as well as Fisker Auto) that I covered in 2013, when I documented the following:

Proterra** –– $6.6 million grant from the Department of Transportation via the 2009-Stimulus funds; plus speculation of millions more via other federal and state programs

Moreover, Proterra has other ties to Tesla via the fact that it is also an investment of the California-based Tao Capital Partners, where we find another billionaire named Nicholas J. Pritzker.

Stay tuned, because both Tesla Motors and Fisker Auto are up next..



The $8.4 Billion DOE Green Car Crony Cash and Crashes 


Since April 2012, I’ve been exposing the Department of Energy Loan Guarantee Program, starting with the “Junk Loans and Cronyism.”As a reminder, it consists of three separate programs, Section 1703, Section 1705, and Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM).

Since 2009, the DOE had guaranteed $34.7 billion of taxpayer money:

  • $10.3 billion through the 1703 to AREVA and Georgia Power
  • $16 billion went out via the 1705 stimulus-created program, but for projects that were rated with a “junk bond status” –– and two have since been pulled: Prologis and SoloPower
  • $8.4 billion through the ATVM 

Despite the fact that virtually the entire DOE loan program (the majority of green-government subsidies for that matter) are part of the “pay to play” scheme and/or those that “get on board” with the Obama administration’s green agenda, we’ll stay focused on the ATVM section.

Department of Energy ATVM Loan Program 

Created under Section 136 of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, the ATVM program holds authority to award up to $25 billion in direct loans –– and currently has “over $16 billion in remaining loan authority.”

In 2009, the DOE initially received around 100 applications vying for this taxpayer money (I have the list), but only the “FAVORED FIVE” were granted loans. Three of the five loans are directly tied to President Obama’s political pals, meanwhile, “both Ford Motor Co. and Nissan were heavily engaged in negotiations with the administration over fuel economy standards for model years 2012- 2016 at the time DOE was considering their applications.” Moreover, “both companies eventually expressed publicly their support for these standards, which the administration described as the ‘Historic Agreement.'”

Those facts can be found inside the March 2012 House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform Report, which laid out a compelling case of cronyism and corruption behind the entire DOE’s Loan Guarantee Program, including a series of issues, mismanagement as well as collateral damage in regards to the ATVM loans (pp. 68-74).

DOE’s Green Car Loan Program creates or saves jobs each worth $217,028


In April 2013, Veronique de Rugy from the Mercatus Center, addressed the green car loan program in her piece, “Cronyism: Green Car Edition“:

The DOE touted the ATVM loan program as a tool for boosting America’s “clean energy economy” by adding nearly 38,700 jobs. Far less attention was paid to how the loan commitments exposed taxpayers to excessive risk, to the tune of about $217,028 per job “created or saved.” [See chart left]. 

Now, considering that two of the car companies crashed, the question remains if the DOE continues to count Fisker’s 2000 and VPG’s 900 “green jobs” in their calculations?

As most know, just as the president promised one million electric cars on U.S. roads by 2015, he also promised 5 million American green jobs.

Many times, Candidate Obama specifically stated: “I will invest $15 billion a year in renewable sources of energy to create 5 million new energy jobs over the next decade— jobs that pay well; jobs that can’t be outsourced; jobs building solar panels and wind turbines and a new electricity grid; jobs building the fuel-efficient cars of tomorrow, not in Japan, not in South Korea but right here in the U.S. of A. Jobs that will help us eliminate the oil we import from the Middle East in 10 years and help save the planet in the bargain. That’s how America can lead again.” 

Well, just as with the electric cars, the delivery has been dismal –– part of the green corruption that we’ve been tracking and reporting on since 2012. And, this is not only as it relates to the green car loan program, but also the billions spent via the 2009-stimulus law.

From the start, which included the radical Van Jones as the original “green jobs czar,” Obama’s green jobs revolution has been rife with hype, corruption, and failure, as well as absolute insanity. And, I don’t dare digress into the “green energy outsourcing” that has occurred under this administration. 


DOE’s Green Car Loan Program’s collateral damage 

In it’s wake, the DOE green car loan program left plenty of collateral damage, including this November 2012 story that was first published at Fox News: “Startup electric car company accuses Energy Department of corruption.”

No surprise. 

San Francisco-based XP Technology, one of the 100 that had applied for a federal loan via the ATVM program, had filed a lawsuit against the DOE. The complaint, which was reported by Lachlan Markay of the Washington Free Beacon, charged the following:

“Corruption and negligence pervaded DOE’s decision to award loan guarantees to Ford, Nissan, Tesla Motors, and Fisker Automotive for the development of electric vehicle technology.” “Investigations have shown that DOE officials intentionally stalled numerous applicants’ reviews in order to force them out of business and protect favored players,” the complaint claims.

Considering that we had the inside scoop early on, days later, and on the condition of anonymity, Marita Noon (my collaborator at the time) and I were given an exclusive interview with a senior official at XP Technology, which was published on November 25, 2012 at Townhall.com: “Exclusive: DOE corruption—appointed and elected officials should face prison time

As of January 2013, these headlines have tracked this development, but we anticipate more news to surface soon.

Despite these issues, the obvious risks, and the fact that in May 2013, Obama’s electric vehicle (not so green or clean) loans program was deemed a “failure,” the Obama administration, in the summer of 2013, revived the controversial ATVM loan program and “is currently accepting applications.”

But today’s Green Corruption File will expose how the $8.4B in “green car crony deals,” from June 2009 until March 2011, went down.



The DOE’s Green Car Loan Program’s favored five 

#1) Fisker Automotive: $529 million in April 2010 / Bankrupt: November 2013

In September 2009, Fisker scored a $529 million ATVM loan, which was finalized in April 2010, to build the $87,900 flashy plug-in Karma sports car. Reports at the time stated: “Fisker plans to use $169.3 million of its loan to work with U.S. suppliers to produce the more expensive Fisker Karma, which will be developed at its Michigan and California offices, but then will be assembled “overseas.” The other $359.36 million will go toward producing “Fisker’s Project Nina, which will be entirely manufactured in the United States.” Fisker had expected to “become profitable by 2011.”

Back in the day (October 2011), ABC reported that Vice President Joe Biden “heralded the Energy Department’s $529 million loan to the start-up electric car company called Fisker as a bright, new path to thousands of American manufacturing jobs.” However, those jobs didn’t materialize — at least not in America. The Karma was produced in Finland.

Two years after the loan was awarded, the Washington Post reported that Fisker “has missed early manufacturing goals and has gradually pushed back plans for U.S. production and the creation of thousands of jobs” and announced that the Karma “failed to meet a promised energy-efficiency standard.”

Photo from DelawareOnline.com

Gov. Jack Markell speaks at a Fisker ceremony in October 2009.
The state gave the car company $21.5 million in taxpayer grants
 

Along the way, the state of Delaware made its own investment into Fisker, as documented by the National Legal and Policy Center: “They committed $21 million in public money to the California-based company, in exchange for a promise to take over a former General Motors manufacturing plant to build its second electric car model, the Atlantic.” Part of the money was for a $12.5 million loan from the state, and get this, Delaware got stuck paying the utility bills for the empty plant –– a tab that ran up to $7.4 million. 

By 2012, Fisker was laying off staff in order to qualify for more government loans. Of course, news of defective battery packs and subsequent fires didn’t help sell the Karma. In the meantime, Fisker had faced “multiple 2012 sales prediction downgrades for its first car release, delivery and cash flow troubles.” Though the company had balked at Solyndra comparisons, Fisker, at that time, was already on “death’s door.”

But Fisker is the “The Solyndra of the Electric Car Industry,” warned Veronique de Rugy in her 2013 piece at the National Review Online. She also describes how the Energy Department is lending money where it “sometimes [goes] to companies that wouldn’t get credit otherwise [like Solyndra]… But in most cases, the money is actually going to well-connected companies that would have been able to get capital without the government’s help [like Fisker].


Ms. de Rugy surmises: 

So Fisker is pretty much the Solyndra of the electric-car industry. It’s bad news for taxpayers, but the worst part of this story, once again, is that most of the money guaranteed by the Department of Energy will go to companies that could have borrowed money on their own, that the government continues to play venture capitalist with our money, introducing systematic distortions and unintended consequences to the market. Loan guarantees are privileges granted to special interests – in other words, cronyism — whether the companies that benefit from the loans go under or stay afloat.

We covered the April 24, 2013 Congressional Hearing on the Failing Fisker Auto, which revealed that, from the very beginning, this was  another “junk loan” approved by the Obama administration –– and a very bad $529 million deal for American taxpayers. In fact, during that hearing, the following was divulged: “They had a triple C rating, they’re under collateralized, they can’t meet payroll, and now we’re surprised?” said Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio. “All the evidence points to that they should never have gotten the loan in the first place.”

Bankrupt:

Fisker crashed in November 2013 –– and that same month, the DOE sold off their $192 million loan guarantee to Chinese billionaire Richard Li for $25 million, which adds them to the long list of green energy outsourcing.

By the end of December 2013, a lawsuit followed, claiming, “the founders and top managers of now-bankrupt Fisker Automotive never told potential investors that the green car startup lost access to federal funds that were crucial to the company’s financial strength.”

Taxpayer money lost:

The money lost is reported to be $160 million. Currently, the DOE documents that loan drawn was $192 million, and the amount recovered is at $53 million. However, as I reported in my January 2014 “Cleantech Crash” report, who knows how much money Delaware taxpayers will lose on the “Fisker Flop.”


Fisker Cronies: 

Fisker Auto was a well-known investment of the ultra-rich John Doerr and former Vice President Al Gore, via the Venture Capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers (KPCB), which was briefly mentioned when revealing the FTA’s purchase of those expensive electric and hybrid buses –– with Proterra, a KPCB investment, as a key contractor for the deal.

Yep, the predicted to be the “world’s first carbon billionaire,” Gore and his climate buddy and partner, billionaire Doerr, who was considered “a very big-ticket Obama donor” by New York Magazine, are Obama pals.

Back in February 2011, Doerr even hosted a star-studded billionaire Silicon Valley dinner for President Obama, and from early 2011, until it closed in 2013, Doerr sat on the president’s useless Jobs Council” (also from Obama’s 2009 PERAB).

While Fisker backers were heavily involved in lobbying the Obama administration and Congress on green energy programs, Doerr shaped what went into the energy sector of the president’s 2009-stimulus package.
Kleiner Perkins is a firm that I began to unravel in 2010, stressing that over fifty percent of their Greentech Portfolio secured all kinds of loans, grants, and special tax breaks –– billions of tax dollars, especially from the stimulus package that Doerr helped craft. 

In January 2013, I revisited Doerr, Gore and their VC firm as well as Gore’s London based Generation Investment Management, and found that, at that time, combined they were tied to at least $10 billion of Obama’s taxpayer funded clean-energy spending spree –– with Fisker not the only investment making its way into the “green graveyard.”


#2. Tesla Motors: $465 million in January 2010 / Paid back loan: May 2013 


Photo from June 2009 from Examiner.com
Arnold Schwarzenegger is one celeb owner of the Tesla Roadster

In June 2009, news hit that Tesla Motors would get “$465 million in loans from the DOE to build Model S, EV power-trains.” The loan was finalized in January 2010 for Tesla “to produce specially designed, all-electric plug-in vehicles; and to develop a manufacturing facility to produce battery packs, electric motors, and other powertrain components that will power specially designed all-electric vehicles.”

Despite the fact that Tesla had been successful in raising hundreds of millions in private equity, it still needed the ATVM loan to help it get out of “the proverbial garage.”

By 2011, even ABC News and iWatch took notice into the $1B risks of these “two politically-connected electric car builders” (Fisker and Tesla):

 And Tesla’s own SEC filings say it has lost money every quarter and states: “We have a history of losses and we expect significant increases in our costs and expenses to result in continuing losses for at least the foreseeable future.”

Along the way (as noted in the opening of this blog post), Tesla had some design problems. But what is not widely known is that, according the New York Times in the fall of 2012 (Cash Flows Are Critical for Tesla), “The federal government eased terms of its $465 million loan to Tesla to ensure the company didn’t breach key financial hurdles.”

Like the Fisker Karma, the Tesla Roadster is popular with the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio and Google co-founder Sergey Brin, and more of the “rich and famous” — as they are the only people who can afford the $100,000+ sports car. And with a cash price of $71,070, the Model S isn’t cheap either.

Other complaints about Tesla include “Over Promise, Under Deliver.” Despite its problems, Tesla, as Forbes green tech writer Todd Woody said in 2012, “is not Solyndra — “though one would be engaging hyperbole to call it a success.”

Success: 

The great news, though, is that in May 2013, “Tesla Motors elected to repay the entire remaining balance on its $465 million loan nine years before the loan’s maturity date” –– and we got 1500 jobs out of the deal. However, the federal government is still subsidizing this car, as heralded on the Tesla site: “The US government offers a $7,500 federal tax credit with the purchase of a new Tesla acquired for personal use.”

And let’s not forget all the other state and federal incentives to go electric and “plug-in America” such as here in California: “Electric vehicle purchasers in California are eligible for a $2,500 rebate from the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP) until funds are exhausted.”

This month, I personally visited a Tesla dealership here in the desert (see photo at the end of this post), and confirmed that for each $70k Tesla I purchase, I get a $7,500 from the feds along with $2500 from the state of California. While there is no way I can afford a Tesla, I am NOT thrilled that my tax dollars go to those that can.

Now, considering that one of the main markers of “success or failure” within the DOE loan program is if we get our taxpayer money back. So, in that we can celebrate.

But the hits keep coming. Daniel Greenfield at FrontPage.com, shared some reality in May 2014: “Tesla loses $50 million [in the first quarter of 2014] and gets $250 million in environmental wealth redistribution.”

Also, in September 2014, it was announced that “Nevada was selected as the official site for the Tesla Battery Gigafactory –– and that too came with “$1.3 billion in government incentives.” At that time, the Crony Chronicles noted the following:

Tesla Motors recently announced that it will build its new lithium battery factory in Nevada. The Nevada state legislature and governor offered Tesla an incentive package of up to $1.3 billion to build the factory in the state. As part of the package, Tesla will face no property or payroll taxes for 10 years and no sales or use taxes for 20 years. The package also includes discounted electricity and other tax incentives.

While Tesla’s factory may bring jobs to Nevada, the tax incentive package is corporate welfare. Company-specific tax incentives let politicians favor selected companies over others. When politicians have the discretion to treat companies or people differently under the law, cronyism becomes a problem.

Considering that the senator from Nevada, Harry Reid, is no stranger to green energy crony deals and it’s subsequent corruption, it remains to be revealed what role he played in this particular case. However, in November 2013, I dedicated an entire Green Corruption File, exposing Reid’s Clean-Energy Dirt –– and how the career politician is directly linked to over $3 billion in green energy stimulus loan. 


Still, there are many Tesla Motor “questions” left unanswered. And, in tracking its success, one must consider Tesla’s 2014 bad review, as well as their recent “tumble” –– of which, according to Market Watch, this fall was just “after Chief Executive Elon Musk said late Tuesday [January 13, 2015] that the electric car maker won’t turn a profit until 2020.”

Tesla Cronies:



Speaking of Elon Musk….

As the story goes: Tesla Motors was incorporated in July 2003 by Martin Eberhard and Marc Tarpenning, who financed the company until the Series A round of funding, which was led by Elon Musk in February 2004. At that time, Musk joined Tesla’s Board of Directors as its chairman.

Musk, who is infamous for his role as co-founder of Pay Pal, is one of President Obama’s billionaire buddies as well as a major DNC contributor.  And while he has given generously to Republicans, Musk is a prominent Obama supporter. According to Tim Carney of the Washington Examiner, he is one of those mega-rich Democrat donors that “get rich off of Democratic policies“: 

Obama max donor Elon Musk sells plug-in cars and solar panels — both of which benefit from the stimulus and other green-energy subsidies pushed by Obama. Musk has also pocketed huge federal contracts under Obama. Plus, Musk has benefited from more than half a billion in Obama export subsidies.

Considering that Mr. Musk is also SolarCity‘s chairman and largest shareholder, which is another huge winner of “green” taxpayer funds from the Obama administration, my July 2014 Green Corruption File is worth a glance. In short: “Subsidizing the Left’s ‘green’ millionaires and billionaires,” surmises that since September 2009, SolarCity has snagged anywhere from $514 million to $1 billion in grants and special tax breaks –– the majority from the massive stimulus package. 
But what is very interesting is what Tim Carney also documented in 2012:

In early 2010, auto industry news site Autoblog described his lobbying on Tesla’s behalf: “Musk flew to Washington D.C. at least a dozen times since early 2009 to help make the case to the Department of Energy for nearly half a billion dollars in low interest loans as part of the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program.”

History tells us that Tesla’s loan was finalized in January 2010. However, Tesla’s ties include many more rich Obama bundlers as well as three “DOE Insiders”…

Nicholas Pritzker

Remember Proterra and those expensive electric and hybrid buses purchased by the FTA that was recently reported by The Washington Free Beacon –– whereas this post exposed as a Kleiner Perkins (Fisker, Al Gore and John Doerr come to mind) investment?

Well, enter in another billionaire named Nicholas J. Pritzker, whom is a real estate and venture entrepreneur as well as a partner at the California-based Tao Capital Partners that invested in Tesla as early as 2006. Tao Capital is also an investor in SolarCity, Proterra and other firms that have been awarded taxpayer money from the Obama administration.

Nicholas, another Obama donor, is a cousin of billionaire Penny Pritzker –– both from Chicago and part of the Hyatt Dynasty.

Also from the President Obama’s 2009 Economic Recovery Advisory Board (PERAB), Penny was one of the “elect members” of the president’s Jobs Council, of which, as noted earlier, is where John Doerr (Fisker) was also a member in both groups.

Established by “executive order,” this useless jobs panel that barely lasted 2 years (Jan 2011 – 2013), according to ABC News (2011), was “stacked full of deep-pocket Democratic donors and high-profile financiers” of Obama’s 2008 and 2012 campaigns.” Meanwhile several were Obama campaign bundlers and it included its share of union representatives like AFL-CIO’s left-wing “elitist” Richard Trumka.

While many of the ultra-rich job council members raked in big green bucks, Penny has worn many liberal hats, including prominent positions like the 2008 National Finance Chair of the Barack Obama for President campaign and co-chair of the 2009 Presidential Inaugural Committee. Although she played a less significant role in the president’s 2012 reelection, in 2013, she ultimately snagged a gig as Obama’s Commerce Secretary, where she currently serves.

Steve Westly

Behind the scenes from the very beginning was Steve Westly –– an Obama friend and DOE Insider  –– who is Founder and Managing Partner of The Westly Group, which was also an early investor in Tesla.

Westly is a two-time Obama bundler; sat on the campaign’s National Finance Committee; and was a co-chair of the 2012 Technology for Obama group. Westly also hosted and/or organized big-dollar fundraisers for Obama both in 2010 and 2012 –– and was one of the four Obama cronies that made a special DNC cameo appearance in late 2012. 


Briefly considered for a cabinet level position in the Obama administration (Secretary of Energy), in August 2010, Westly ultimately secured a top advisory role inside the DOE close to Energy Secretary Steven Chu. It seems that this was a gig that outlasted Chu’s tenure, because, according to his bio, Westly “currently serves on the Secretary of Energy’s Advisory Board as a representative for the venture capital industry.”

In 2011 Westly was tagged as the “Green bundler with the golden touch,” of which IWatch pointed to “a trail of [green] loans, grants and tax breaks,” including Tesla. But as of January 2013, I found that of the 20 firms listed at that time (exited and current), at least 50 percent of The Westly Group portfolio were winners in the Obama green energy spending spree –– with some making their way into the “green graveyard.” 

But there’s more… 
Steve Spinner

Steve Spinner is another DOE Insider that, while he is best known for his role in the Solyndra corruption case, he just so happened to be a “consultant” to Tesla before he joined the Obama camp.

From April 2009 to September 2010, Spinner served as an advisor for the DOE loan program, of which a complete bio, as well as his “green” connections and collusion can be found in my October 2014 Green Corruption File: “Ebola: Solyndra is dead and politics is alive.”

In short: Spinner is a two-time Obama bundler; he worked for Obama’s 2008 Transition Team; and was part the president’s 2012 reelection campaign, serving as a California finance chair and founded Technology for Obama (T4O).

Spinner was also handpicked to make a cameo appearance at the 2012 Democratic National Convention, along with other wealthy Obama green cronies: Tom Steyer, Jim Rogers, and Steve Westly (profiled earlier).  And while in April 2009, Spinner was appointed as the DOE Loan Programs “advisor” to then-Energy Secretary Steven Chu, by September 2010, he left the DOE and about that same time joined Center for American Progress (CAP) as a Senior Fellow until October 2011. CAP, as I’ve mentioned many times, is the dark, driving force behind the president’s green energy scheme.

VantagePoint Capital Partners and Google

Like many of these Big VC’s, their “cleantech” investments overlap. Two additional big VC firms are tied to the Tesla deal as key investors: VantagePoint Capital Partners and Google. 

Although Tesla is not listed on Google Ventures investment portfolio, it turns out that Google co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are two of the investors that have been pumping money into Tesla Motors as far back as 2006. Meanwhile, VantagePoint joined forces also on May 31, 2006 when Tesla Motors announced “the completion of its $40 million Series C financing led by VantagePoint Venture Partners, one of the largest CleanTech investors in Silicon Valley…”


VantagePoint is where we find DOE Insider Sanjay Wagle, who prior to arriving in Washington was a principal at this firm. From June 2009 to November 2011, Wagle served as Renewable Energy Advisor to the Energy Department, under then-Energy Secretary Chu.

Both firms, and their top executives, are major Obama supporters –– top donors, fundraisers, advisors, and so on –– of which both, via Team Obama, not only snagged a huge amount of clean-energy taxpayer funds for additional investments other than Tesla, they are key players inside the massive Ivanpah solar project that snagged a huge stimulus loan. 

This and more can be found in my November 2014 Green Corruption File entitled,
Not Enough Sun Shining at California Ivanpah Solar Plant: $1.6 billion shady stimulus deal tied to numerous wealthy Obama cronies now expect $539 million of free taxpayer cash.”
 

Goldman Sachs


As the Tesla Tale continues…

On 29 January 2010, Tesla Motors filed Form S-1 with the U.S SEC as a preliminary prospectus indicating its intention to file an initial public offering (IPO) underwritten by Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan and Deutsche Bank.

When Tesla Motors launched its initial public offering on NASDAQ, that’s not all that Goldman Sachs helped with –– which can be foun on their website:

Electric vehicles: In February 2014, we managed a $2 billion convertible notes offering for Tesla, a manufacturer of high-performance, fully electric vehicles and advanced electric vehicle powertrain components. The offering was significantly oversubscribed and represented the largest convertible debt transaction since 2010. In May 2013, we helped raise over $1 billion in new financing for the company, which enabled Tesla to repay the entire loan that it had received from the U.S. Department of Energy in 2010, nine years earlier than it was due. This was the sixth equity or equity linked offering we have led for the company, including acting as an underwriter for them on their initial public offering in 2010.


Then by May 2013, “Tesla Motors elected to repay the entire remaining balance on its $465 million loan nine years before the loan’s maturity date” –– and as mentioned, we got 1500 jobs out of the deal. And, taxpayers are still subsidizing every “green car” that Tesla sells.

But let’s get back to Goldman Sachs, the mega firm that is another Big Obama Crony. Goldman Sachs was a top Obama donor in 2008, but we also know that two Goldman executives sat on Obama’s 2008 Finance Committee and a slew of partners, executives and board members bundled for, and donated to Obama’s 2008 campaign. Even though in 2012, Goldman Sachs turned their back on Mr. Obama, there were many executives and board members that helped him get reelected.

Meanwhile, just as previous administrations from both sides of the isle, Obama’s have been infested with “Goldmanites.”

Needless to say, since 2010, I’ve been tracking how this “Big Bailed Out Bank” –– now heavily involved in “green” (over $40B) –– has been cashing in on the “cleantech funds” that the Obama administration has been dishing out since he took office in 2009.

Moreover, Goldman has been pushing for a “carbon tax” (cap-and trade legislation) –– the real pot of gold at the end of the climate rainbow.

In fact their DNA is all over “green.”

Considering that Goldman Sachs became a CAP donor as early as 2012, I unleashed most of their green corruption inside my March 2014 post: “Podesta Power and Center for American Progress: The dark, driving force behind the president’s massive green energy scheme.”


Goldman Sachs (Alternative Energy Group) had an invested interest –– via various roles, and having entered the scene at different junctures (before, during and after taxpayer subsidies were awarded) –– in many projects and firms that received green energy loans, grants and special tax breaks.

At that time, I found that at least 14 firms, which included Tesla, as well as the huge California Ivanpah solar project mentioned earlier with VantagePoint and Google, connects Goldman to over $8.5 billion from the Green Bank of Obama.

And, you don’t have to go to far to read about Goldman’s “green,” which can be found in my January 2015 Green Corruption File: “Two Big White House ‘Green’ Cronies Unite: First Wind scored over $700 million of stimulus funds, now being acquired by SunEdison.”

Keep in mind too, that Goldman is associated (former executives and investments) with the Big VC firm Kleiner Perkins as well as Generation Investment Management (GIM). As a reminder, Kleiner Perkins is where we find the “climate duo,” whose combined carbon footprint is larger than my entire city: Billionaires John Doerr and Al Gore, both partners at the firm –– listed above under the Failed Fisker section.

Oh, and guess who is already backing Hillary Clinton, the Democratic frontrunner for the 2016 presidential bid?

Yep, Goldman Sachs

But then again, that’s no surprise because Goldman Sachs has been siding with the Democrats for a very long time. Even the liberal writer and author, Matt Taibbi, in his July 2009 Rolling Stone Magazine article, “The Great American Bubble Machine,” warns that Goldman Sachs is orchestrating the next bubble… “Global warming.”

Taibbi opens with this:

The first thing you need to know about Goldman Sachs is that it’s everywhere. The world’s most powerful investment bank is a great vampire squid wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming its blood funnel into anything that smells like money.

In that same piece and subsequent video, Taibbi exposes Goldman Sachs’ “long-standing and very deep ties to the Democratic Party,” and their “long history” of putting their former employees in Democratic administrations.

So, you can bet your bottom dollar that we’ll continue to keep tabs on Goldman Sachs as well as Hillary Clinton, digging up more clean-energy dirt in order to expose, what now appears to be –– even when President Obama exits the White House –– the never-ending Earth shattering climate change scam.


#3. The Vehicle Production Group LLC: $50 million in March 2011 / Shut Down: February 2013 

Photo from USA Today Andrew Burton/Getty Images 

Vehicle Production Group (VPG Holdings LLC), which “is a designer, developer, and marketer of specialty vehicles (cars and taxis),” in March 2011, received a $50 million ATVM loan.  Yet, “the Energy Department conditionally offered the start-up its low-cost, government-backed financing” in November 2010.

According to USA Today, “VPG was deemed eligible for the clean-energy loan because some of its vans were to be fitted to run on compressed natural gas.”

Even though not everyone thinks putting more natural-gas vehicles on the road is a good thing, there are still “Pros and Cons to Natural-Gas Vehicles” to consider. 

Shut Down:


Nevertheless, while not an electric car, this green car deal fits into how the Obama administration fueled their friends and failure, because in May 2013, the Hill reported, “Obama-backed natural-gas van company shuts down.” Yet, it was in February 2013, that VPG had “quietly ceased operation and laid off its staff,” reported USA Today.

At that time, as documented in the same USA Today piece, even after they had “raised $400 million in private capital from investors” as well as snagging the $50 million from U.S. taxpayers, VPG “ran low on cash.” However, USA Today also noted that “though about 100 staff were laid
off and its offices shuttered, the company has not filed for bankruptcy reorganization.”

Hmmm, it seems that VPG may have morphed into another car dealer: The “all New MV-1 is a purpose-built accessible vehicle” brought to you by Mobility Ventures LLC; & AM General LLC.

Taxpayer money lost


In August 2013, the Energy Department placed VPG’s bad loan up for auction, however, it is unclear how that went. Currently the DOE loan drawn was $50 million and the amount recovered is pending.
VPG Cronies: 

Perseus L.L.C., a merchant banking and private equity firm, has been the leading investor in VPG since 2008 –– and the “specialty green car maker” was also reported to be “backed by oil baron and natural gas vehicle advocate T. Boone Pickens.”

And, it was “NO surprise” when it was uncovered that another Obama bundler is tied to this deal –– with the Washington Post, in October 2011, finally connecting some of the “green corruption” dots to an infamous Democrat operative, the former Chairman of Fannie Mae as well as a Goldman Sachs board member since 1999:

Washington-based Perseus says its affiliation with James A. Johnson [Vice Chairman from April 2001 – June 2012] a major fundraiser for Obama’s campaign, played no role in persuading the Energy Department to award the loan to Vehicle Production Group


Johnson headed Obama’s vice presidential selection committee in 2008 and is the former chairman of housing mortgage giant Fannie Mae. He was listed as a campaign fundraising bundler for Obama in the 2008 race…

Nevertheless, The Post reported that Johnson played “no role” in securing this $50 million loan, and that according to Department spokesman Damien LaVera, “the decision was based on merit.”


Maybe, so I’ve been told. But merit… REALLY?

First, we shouldn’t neglect to point out Mr. Johnson’s lengthy and powerful resume, which includes his ties to powerful Democrats like Secretary of State John Kerry, the former Secretary State Hillary Clinton and others. He is also currently a member and Treasurer for that shadowy group American Friends of Bilderberg.  
Besides being an Obama bundler and big bucks donor (he personally donated to both campaigns), Mr. Johnson, who had supported Senator Obama, had other roles: “Before Obama’s inauguration, Johnson served as a lead member of Obama’s transition team, advising him on economic policies,” documented The Post. 
Johnson also headed Obama’s vice presidential selection committee in 2008, along with Eric Holder and Caroline Kennedy; however, according to The Post, “Johnson resigned in June 2008 amid revelations that he had received $7 million in deeply discounted mortgage loans from the chief executive of Countrywide, a company that had helped fuel the rise of subprime home mortgages. He said the controversy was a distraction for Obama’s campaign.” 

Meanwhile, Perseus Chairman Frank Pearl “donated $1,500 to Obama’s campaign in 2008…”

And, “All told, Perseus officers have donated $120,700 to Obama and the Democratic Party’s top three fundraising committees since the 2007-08 election cycle,” noted The Post.

Still, VPG is not the only failure of Perseus. Two additional green energy investments secured funds from the Obama administration, but were sorely missed by the media: The Beacon Bust and the Evergreen Solar Shut Out. 

And, considering the last I checked (in 2012), when they had seventeen companies listed on the Perseus Energy & Technologies Portfolio, including Clean Energy Fuels Corp., T. Boone Pickens’ alternative energy company, I’m sure if we dug deeper, we’d fine more. 

While all three are highlighted in my January 2014 “Cleantech Crash” report, more details on this firm and Mr. Johnson can be found in my August 2012 Green Corruption File: “Beacon Bust Tied to Obama Bundler and VP Hunter, the Infamous Washington Fixture, James A. Johnson.” 



#4. Ford Motor Company: $5.9 billion in September 2009 


According to the DOE:

In September 2009, the Department of Energy issued a nearly $5.9 billion loan from the Energy Department’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) Loan Program, enabling Ford to upgrade 13 factories across Illinois, Kentucky, New York, Michigan, Missouri, and Ohio to state-of-the-art assembly and manufacturing plants capable of flexibility producing multiple-platform, fuel-efficient advanced technology vehicles in response to changing market demands.

However, here is another version: 
In late 2008, “Chrysler and General Motors told
America
that they were in danger of folding” –– which lead to Chrysler
filing
for bankruptcy
in May 2009 and GM following
in June 2009.  While the bailout process began under President Bush, he “handed the auto companies’ long-term future over to his successor,
President-Elect Barack Obama.” Obama then shepherded a comprehensive
bailout of the two companies: over
$80 billion
($17.5 billion under Bush and $63.4 billion from Obama), of
which reports
claim
that taxpayers lost at least $14 billion –– many heralding this as a
success.

Sure.

Needless to say, at that time, Ford Motors went along for the ride:
They went to Congress with GM and Chrysler in 2008 to call for a federal
rescue.

While Ford appeared to be in better shape than GM and Chrysler,
they were part of the “Big Three
seeking $34 billion in government aid. Yet, according to
the
 Los Angeles Times,
“Ford didn’t need the money itself –– it had previously arranged a
multi billion-dollar line of private credit.” 



Now, IF
they didn’t need the cash, then why was Ford Motor Company asking
for “a $9 billion line of credit from the government and a $5 billion from
the Energy Department program?”

Nevertheless, in September 2009 (announced in June 2009), the DOE finalized $5.9 billion loan from the ATVM Loan Program to Ford, which the Energy Department claims the following:

Factory improvements from this project will enable Ford to continue improving fuel efficiency in more than a dozen popular vehicles, including the Escape, Fiesta, Focus, Fusion, and Taurus cars; as well as the F-150 truck. The innovations include the family of Ford EcoBoost engines, which are available in almost all models, and introductions of new hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and all-electric plug-in vehicles.



Bailout?

“While not characterized as a ‘bailout’ by any means, let’s be honest: Ford’s loan – received at a critical time when other sources of financing weren’t available to automakers or their suppliers – no doubt helped the carmaker survive the industry crisis and contributed to its strong market position today, especially after the Obama administration finalized tougher fuel economy rules this week [August 2012],” wrote Joann Muller of Forbes in mid 2012.

But then again, “for some unexplainable reason,” during a visit to the Detroit Auto Show on January 16, 2013, in a conversation with Bill Ford, Jr., the executive chairman of Ford Motor Company, Vice President Joe Biden reportedly
said
, “Thank you for saving our ass.” 


Say what? Who saved whose butt? Or maybe just another Joe Biden gaffe. 


To be fair, Ford Motor Company has many years to pay off the loan (June 15, 2022), and the odds of the Energy Department losing large amounts of money from this $5.9 billion loan is low. But it’s not impossible. All we have to do is go back to the egregious 2008 bailouts.

Now, I’m all for “fuel efficiency,” but this massive “green loan” is funding Ford’s “NOT so green, “green cars” –– such as their HYBRID AND ELECTRIC VEHICLES, which ranges from the Fusion Hybrid, to the all-new C-MAX Energi, to the all electric Focus Electric.

Apparently, “going green” can be detrimental to the environment, and those “hybrid” cars… well, they are not so green either. This entails “The Good, the Bad, and the Surprisingly Wasteful,” of which the Corvallis Advocate addressed in 2012:

Considering many hybrid vehicles run on an alternating combination of electricity and gasoline, it makes sense to assess where the electricity for the vehicle is coming from. This is because electricity is not always cleaner than gasoline…

Also, if the Energy Department deemed that this $5.9B “project created and preserved [dreamed or otherwise] green manufacturing jobs for more than 33,000 Ford employees,” then we can rest assure that this tally fits into the $10B spent on “green cars that are NOT so green.”

#5. Nissan North America, Inc.: $1.45 billion in January 2010

Again, according to the DOE:

In January 2010, the Department of Energy awarded Nissan a $1.45 billion loan under the Department of Energy’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) Loan Program. Nissan used the loan to construct one of the largest advanced battery manufacturing plants in the U.S., retool its Smyrna, Tennessee manufacturing facility for assembly of the all-electric LEAF vehicle, and to construct an efficient and environmentally friendly paint plant. Nissan also used the loan to develop an electric power train manufacturing line for the LEAF vehicle within its engine manufacturing facility in Decherd, Tennessee.

Here is another version, which was documented in my January 2014 “Cleantech Crash” report, yet this section will provide some key updates.

In January 2010, the DOE awarded Nissan a $1.45 billion ATVM loan –– and get this…Nissan’s ATVM-supported projects will create just over 1,300 jobs.  Isn’t that about $1 billion per job?

Troubles:

According to Green Car Reports, the Nissan LEAF sales in 2011 and 2012 were dim. By September 2012, Time Magazine asked this question: “Is It Time to Declare the Nissan Leaf a Flop?” Meanwhile, on November 9, 2013, Nissan canceled its grand opening for at their Tennessee battery plant (the one funded by the $1.4 billion). 

It wasn’t until November 15, 2012 –– reported by the Detroit News –– that “Nissan Motor CEO Carlos Ghosn finally admitted the automaker will not meet its [2012] sales target for its all-electric LEAF — in another sign of the broad struggle of the electric vehicle industry.”

By mid 2013, he LEAF was doing better than the Chevy Volt. However, the electric car race shifted, when these headlines emerged at the Auto Blog: “Nissan Leaf ends 2013 with best sales month ever, but can’t catch Chevy Volt” –– and that is despite Nissan’s price drop at the time.

In May 2013, Automotive News noted, “Nissan Motor Co., which doesn’t file financial statements in the U.S., hasn’t released details about its $1.4 billion loan repayment record or schedule,” which followed with a claim that Nissan “is fully compliant with the terms of the loan.” So, it’s unlikely, but not impossible, that Nissan (who also has years to pay) will default on their $1.4 billion DOE loan.

We’ll see…

Nevertheless, as mentioned at the beginning of this post, and according to Yahoo Finance, “The bestselling EV in the US is the Nissan LEAF. About 30,000 were sold in 2014…”

But recent news by Inside EV’s, in their report, “Nissan LEAF Sales Fall In January 2015 For First Time In 2 Years In US,” wrote the following: 

Despite some 22 production electric vehicles on sale in the United States, the Nissan LEAF continued to steadfastly hold onto its 25% market share throughout the year [2014]. 

In fact every month for the LEAF in 2014 was a record month, besting the previous years by a considerable margin. And the year before…good for 23 months in a row. 

Unfortunately, that streak came to an end in 2015, as just 1,070 units were sold, which was off by about 15% from 2014 when Nissan moved 1,252 cars. 

We’ll keep an eye on the all-electric LEAF.

But wait, there’s more…

GM Snags at Least 5 Grants worth $482 Million of FREE Green Energy Stimulus Funds: Majority went toward the “dangerous” all-electric Chevy Volt 

After the taxpayers bailed out General Motors –– over $80 billion ($17.5 billion under Bush and $63.4 billion from Obama) –– of which at least $14 billion was lost in the transaction, President Obama, Vice President Biden and their allies continually take victory laps.

Remember when Vice President Joe Biden addressed the 2012 Democratic National, making the case for re-electing President Obama. Osama Bin Ladin is dead, and General Motors is alive!,” Biden screamed.




Standing ovation –– applause, applause! Yeah Team! 

However, 2012 headlines emerged, smashing that narrative: GM: From Bad to Worse –– with Forbes predicting, “GM is headed for bankruptcy—again.”


One of the prime malfunctions most relevant in today’s Green Corruption File is GM’s all-electric Chevy Volt.

Since its 2010 roll out, the Chevy Volt has been plagued by sluggish sales and mounting losses. In early 2012, GM halted the Volt’s production and laid-off 1300 workers. By the end of 2012, headlines circulated, “The Chevy Volt: Another Obama Green Investment Loses a Billion”

Still, by the spring of 2013, the Volt sales were a “fiasco” –– even when considering its poor “roller coaster sales and production estimates.”

And it seems that 2015 has yet to give the Volt a boost. According to a February 2015 Green Car Report:

Last year’s U.S. sales of plug-in electric cars were the highest on record, but now the traditional winter sales slump is likely to set in.

Electric car sales usually dip during the coldest months, so we’ll see how January results fared as sales figures come in today and tomorrow.

As the Green Car Report addressed the Nissan LEAF (the cheapest costs $21,510 when factoring in the federal tax saving), and their low January 2015 sales, they also noted that the Volt, priced from $34,345, “January deliveries were a mere 542,” comparing it against “918 in 2014 and 1,140 in 2013.”

They also claim that it “looks like some seasonal slump.”


Slump, maybe. But isn’t the all-electric Volt deemed the “most dangerous car in the world?” And what about the fact that the “Chevy Volt makes NO money, and costs taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars per car?”


Hold up: there’s more…

What most Americans don’t know is that in 2009, the failed automaker snagged at least $482 million of “FREE” green energy money from the failed stimulus law, of which the majority of the monies went toward the all-electric Chevy Volt.


This can be found in the January 25, 2012 House Oversight Report, which also accuses President Obama of using an “unusual blurring of public and private sector boundaries” to tout his so-called cleantech accomplishments –– as in the case of General Motors, commonly referred to as Government Motors.

At any rate, here’s the documented cash:

The Obama Administration has also invested heavily in the development of new technology for electric cars: The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) appropriated $2.4 billion for domestic production of batteries and components for electric cars. Of this, $1.5 billion in grants were directed toward manufacturing the batteries, while the remaining $900 million went to building new facilities or improving existing facilities to produce electric drive components. This included $151.4 million to Michigan-based Compact Power, Inc., for production of lithium-ion polymer battery cells for the GM Volt [this is LG Chem that is also in my “cleantech crash” troubled list]; $105.9 million directly to GM for production of high-volume battery packs for the Volt; $105 million to GM to construct facilities for electric drive systems; and $89.3 million to Delphi Automotive Systems, a former division of GM, to expand manufacturing facilities for electric drive power components.

But not listed is the $30.5 GM received from the “RECOVERY ACT AWARDS FOR ELECTRIC DRIVE VEHICLE BATTERY AND COMPONENT MANUFACTURING INITIATIVE,” to “develop, analyze, and demonstrate 155 Chevrolet Volt Extended Range Electric Vehicles (EREVs) in conjunction with electric utility partners.”

Also, buyers of the Volt will receive a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 of per vehicle” as well as state tax credits.

Somewhere along the way, Obama’s “green crony,” Duke Energy, received a $350,000 grant to assist General Motors in the development of the Chevrolet Volt. In 2012, the Chevy Volt added a new deep-pocketed customer: the Pentagon, which means taxpayers, again is subsidizing GM’s “green.”

It seems that GM has been scrambling to make up for the money it loses on every Chevy Volt (complete with an unknown cost for replacement batteries) –– even as they launch more green cars: the Chevy Spark EV; the Cadillac ELR; and hot off the press, Chevrolet, a division of GM, revealed it plans to launch the $30,000 Chevy Bolt.

Sadly, no matter what, taxpayers have to go along for the ride when GM crashes again.

$2.4 Billion Stimulus Funds went to “Green Car” Paraphernalia 



This brings me to the rest of the battery grant winners –– another DOE program created by the 2009-Recovery Act in order to fulfill President Obama’s “green car revolution.” This is referred to as the “Electric Drive Battery and Component Manufacturing Initiative,” which was the $2.4 billion stimulus effort to jump-start the electric car industry, which included $1.2 billion for battery cell and pack manufacturing facilities.

Besides big automaker GM, both Ford ($100 million) and Chrysler ($73 million) also benefited “Big Time” from this stimulus program. Worse, is that among the 48 green battery grants, many can be found my January 2014 “Cleantech Crash Report,” which exposes the never-ending Obama-backed green energy failures that I have been compiling since October 2012, and included a May 2013 update

“Green Graveyard” term and photo taken from
Heritage.org; (now The Daily Signal) Reporting 

Below are some of the losers from the “electric battery stimulus grant winners” –– with additional research and reporting to follow: 

BUST (bankrupt, sold, discontinued, disappeared, etc.)

A123 Systems: $249.1 million

In 2009, Lithium-ion battery maker A123 Systems Inc. was awarded an electric battery stimulus grant worth $249.1 million. Meanwhile, the Michigan government provided A123 with another $141 million in tax credits and subsidies, bringing the total to $390.1 million in federal and state subsidies.


Oh, the interesting twist in this case: A123 supplied batteries for the failed Fisker Karma. 
Still with all that loot, A123 filed for bankruptcy on October 16, 2012, and in December 2012 was purchased by the Chinese firm Wanxiang Group Corp. (a large auto parts maker), which renamed the lithium-ion battery company B456, which not only buries them in the “green graveyard,” but is another case of green energy outsourcing under the Obama regime. 
Taxpayer money lost: The Heritage Foundation places the A123 System bad bet total at $377.1 million.

ECOtality Inc.: $114.8 million 

According to the Washington Times, “ECOtality received $135 million in total funding from the federal government over the past eight years.”

In an October 2013 DOE Inspector General (IG) audit called, “Recent Events Related to ECOtality, Inc.,” we find some key information. First is that these monies “included two multi-year projects awarded in 2005 and 2011, valued at about $35 million to evaluate and test specific vehicles.”



In between those deals, ECOtality, in 2009, also snagged one of those electric battery stimulus grants worth $114.8 million in order “to deploy an electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure and to collect and analyze EV usage information.” 
According to the IG report, “For each award, ECOtality was required to share in the cost of the project” –– and had particular milestones to meet. However they never met their “EV project obligations,” which included installing charging stations and collecting electric vehicle usage data.

On September 16, 2013, ECOtality filed a petition for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy. A month later is when that IG report (noted above) surfaced. That is when it was revealed that “Energy Department officials kept quiet about their knowledge that a government-backed electric car charger company was sliding toward bankruptcy and putting taxpayer money at risk,” documented the Times as well as the Washington Free Beacon.

Taxpayer money lost: While the total for ECOtality’s electric adventuress topped $135 million, and at some point, the DOE “cut off Ecotality’s Recovery Act funding but continued to make payments on the $26 million project it was awarded in 2011,” (noted Tim Devaney of The Times), it is still unclear how much taxpayer money they took down with them when they went bust.

Ener1 (EnerDel, subsidiary): $118.5 million

In 2009, the DOE approved a $118.5 million stimulus grant for lithium-ion battery production in Indianapolis –– which its parent company, EnerDel, had also received more than $4 million in federal grants under the Bush administration. 

The larger amount was the electric battery stimulus grant. However, two and a half years later, on January 26, 2012, Ener1 went bankrupt. Along the way (in 2011), the Chinese firm Wanxiang Group Corp., signed a joint venture agreement with Ener1 to make lithium-ion battery cells and packs for vehicles in China. After the 2012 bankruptcy, Ener1 was sold to a Russian tycoon, which again adds to the long list of green energy outsourcing. 
Taxpayer money lost: The Heritage Foundation places the Ener1 (EnerDel, subsidiary) bad bet total at $182.8 million.

Navistar International 

In April 17, 2009, the DOE announced the selection of Navistar Corporation for a cost-shared award of up to $10 million to develop, test, and deploy plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) school buses.” 

Referred to as IC Bus™, they claim –– video included –– that “15 million children” are now riding these “green” buses, and they come in four types for you to buy. Oh, and the New York Department of Corrections has some IC Buses too. 

That’s sweet, but that’s just the start…

According to the Washington Post, in August 2009, President Obama had “announced the $2.4 billion in advanced-battery grants at a recreational-vehicle assembly plant in Wakarusa, Ind., where Navistar said it planned to build the eStar, an electric truck for fleets.”

“Just a few months ago, folks thought these factories might be closed for good, but now they’re coming back to life,” Obama said that day.
Navistar, “a leading manufacturer of commercial trucks, buses, defense vehicles and engines” that not only rakes in big Department of Defense (DoD) contracts, but also snagged a $39.2 million electric battery stimulus grant to “develop, validate, and deploy 950 advanced battery electric delivery trucks with a 100 mile range.”
In May 2010, Navistar officially unveiled its eStar medium-size electric delivery truck, of which it was reported that FedEx in the Los Angeles areas would test four. 

As reported by The Post, “a large Maryland truck dealership tried for a year to sell an eStar, then sold it back to Navistar. Sam Eitel, marketing manager for Beltway Cos., said customers liked the truck’s sleek looks but were stopped cold by its $150,000-plus list price.”
Coca-Cola eStar truck pic from wikipedia.org 

Despite the high-profile customers of the Navistar eStar electric van, which included Fed Ex (4 trucks in 2010); Pacific Gas and Electric Company (“some” in 2010); Canada Post (one in April 2011); and in September 2011, Coca-Cola added six Navistar eStar electric trucks to its U.S. fleet, by the end of 2011, it was documented that Navistar had only sold 100 of those high-priced electric delivery trucks.

Still, in searching for new sales data for the eStar, all I could find was “Navistar eStar Vehicle Performance Evaluation,” which was prepared August 2014 by the DOE’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). In that report, we find only 101 vehicles reporting.

Hmmm, OK. 

That’s most likely because, in March 2013, and as part of a “Turnaround Plan,” Navistar had discontinued its eStar electric van! 

As reported by Truckinginfo.com, “The sell-off of Navistar RV and dropping of eStar and other products are part of the company’s restructuring [that] begun under previous leadership and continuing under new top executives who took over in March [2013].”

That’s code for an “eStar failure.”

And, lo and behold: “the company is still in the midst of a Securities Exchange Commission investigation about how it handled the 2010 emissions regulations.”

But considering that Navistar is a multi-billion dollar global transportation empire, why did they score $39.2 million of free taxpayer cash in the first place? And, did we lose that 39 mill?

TROUBLED

Smith Electric Vehicles: $10 million

In 2009, Smith Electric was awarded a $10 million electric battery stimulus grant. Then in May 2010, this same company snagged “a $22 million boost to the original $10 million Department of Energy grant.”

In all, “Smith Electric Vehicles U.S. Corp. got $32 million in federal money to help develop future all-electric vehicles and to reimburse customers participating in a study of how the vehicles operate.

Despite the cash and President Obama’s July 2010 special visit to Smith Electric’s new factory in Kansas City, Missouri, touting the success of his 2009-Recovery Act, things haven’t gone so well.

Since 2009, the Kansas City electric-truck manufacturer has been burning through cash; has racked up millions in losses; and in 2012 scrapped its IPO. Along the way, (February 2011), Smith Electric Vehicles partnered with Wanxiang Group Corp, which included a “$25 million equity investment” –– obviously a bailout and more green energy outsourcing.

So, in November 2012, Smith Electric made plans to open an electric vehicle manufacturing facility in Chicago –– a deal that comes with, under the leadership of Mayor Rahm Emanuel (President Obama’s former chief of staff who served from 2009 to 2010), a comprehensive, $15 million incentive program from the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT).

Compact Power, on behalf of LG Chem, which is tied to GM’s Chevy Volt: $151.4 million

Then there’s the $151.4 million electric battery stimulus grant that went to the Michigan-based Compact Power, Inc., for production of lithium-ion polymer battery cells for the GM Volt. They also received millions ($175 million) worth of special state tax breaks based on, of all things, jobs creation.  

This plant was opened in July 2010 with a groundbreaking attended by President Obama –– who even touted it as evidence that “manufacturing jobs are coming back to the United States.” However, Fox News reported in 2012, “two years later, a Michigan hybrid battery plant built with $150 million in taxpayer funds was putting workers on furlough before a single battery has been produced.”


The Auto Blog reminds us of this infamous facility:

…the factory [in late 2012] gained notoriety after a US Department of Energy (DOE) probe found that workers there were getting paid to do, well, nothing. That’s because demand for the battery packs was so low that it cost less for the plant to sit idle…


Well, the LG Chem workers weren’t doing noting; “they spent hours playing cards and board games, reading magazines or watching movies.”


Due to inadequate oversight of these and all stimulus funds by the DOE, this firm got away with it.

Well, until it was made known by an employee.

It turns out, too, that the battery supplier for the Chevy Volt, LG Chem continues to manufacture batteries in South Korea.

Wasn’t the stimulus money for U.S companies and American jobs?

Nevertheless, according to Forbes in 2013, “Although the government cannot force LG Chem to shift production to Michigan, it did convince the company to return half of $1.6 million in total labor costs billed for inappropriate activities.”

Wow, we get 1 mill out of $300 mill back! 

Somewhere along they way (September 2013), LG Chem shut down because “it lacked approval from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to use a key chemical in production.” But reopened two months later.

And, it seems that in the fall of 2014, “LG Chem’s troubled Chevy Volt battery plant was hiring once again.” While it was reported that they aimed at bringing “on 40 new employees in order to meet higher battery demand,” I still wonder what games the employees have in store, because, as detailed earlier, the Volt is not doing so well –– only selling a whopping 542 here in the U.S. and 71 in Canada last month.


Johnson Controls: $299.2 million

In 2009, when “Vice President Joe Biden came to Dearborn to unveil more than a dozen Michigan awards for battery-related projects [from the Electric Battery Stimulus Grant Program],” the global mega company Johnson Controls was on that list. 


In fact, with all the excitement, MLive.com, reported the following:

Johnson Controls-Saft Advanced Power Solutions and Ford Motor Co. garnered the biggest prize awarded by the Department of Energy, receiving $299 million.  This spring, JCI said it would use an existing auto parts plant at Meadowbrook Avenue and 48th Street for the high-tech project. 

The site will produce battery packs for a future Ford plug-in hybrid vehicle. The venture business, known as JCS, links JCI with the French company, Saft.

It was reported at that time, “Once JCI-Saft gets the grant money, combined with $148.5 million in incentives already awarded by the state [of Michigan], the project will unfold quickly.”

Still, the $300 million of free taxpayer cash that was supposed to go into producing electric car batteries and open up two factories in the U.S. –– the one in Michigan and the other in Oregon. Needless to say, touted as a “success” in a 2012 Obama campaign ad, Johnson Controls actually opened only one U.S. factory –– and at that time, the plant was only operating at half-capacity.

While it was reported that Johnson Controls was set to build a second factory in Hungary, it’s unclear if that was with the stimulus monies. However we do know that in 2012, Johnson Controls was downsizing: laying off staff at their corporate headquarters. NOTE: More details on this crazy story can be found in the May 2012 story by Business Insider.

Meanwhile, the U.S. plant featured in the ad was the story of an employee of Johnson Controls, Brian Slagle, who was an autoworker in Ohio. What’s funny is that “the ad shows him getting up early to head into a job that provides for his young family. And he’s really grateful to Obama for it.” 
Hmm, Ohio? What about Holland, Michigan and Lebanon, Oregon?


While Johnson Controls does produce hybrid, electric batteries, and the like, all I could find is a “Portland Office” and a Johnson Controls plant in Holland, Ohio.

What else is ironic is that around that same time, “the battery plant where Slagle works in Springfield Township was hit with a hefty fine from OSHA for exposing employees to an unreasonable amount of lead.”


But wait… JCI’s factory in Holland, Michigan was built jointly with Saft, yet it is now wholly owned by JCI.

This is Johnson Controls Power Solutions Meadowbrook manufacturing plant in Holland that was subsidized with that $300 million, and began operations four years ago. We also know that President Obama visited the plant in August 2011 to promote his economic stimulus programs, of which we know Johnson Controls benefited. 


Apparently, things are GOOD at the “41,000-square-foot Holland plant, which also supplies batteries for Mercedes Benz Odyne PHEV Heavy Duty vehicles and General Motors’ hybrid fleet vehicles,” documented MLive.com

This came with an announced that “Johnson Controls Power Solutions announced its Meadowbrook manufacturing plant in Holland will be supplying advanced lithium-ion batteries for the 2015 Hybrid Range Rover.”

That’s great, but what about the Oregon plant?

The Rest

Below is a short list of the rest of the stimulus grants winners that were funded in 2009 “to develop batteries, parts and programs for electric cars,” costing American taxpayers $2.4 billion. However, since I’ve only analyzed about ten of the 48 battery grant winners, stay tuned for a full report this year.

  • Dow Kokam: $161 million
  • Delphi Automotive Systems: $89.3 million
  • Saft America: $95.5 million
  • UQM Technologies: $45.1 million
  • Polypore subsidiary Celgard: $49.2 million
  • Magna E-Car Systems of America: $40 million
  • Exide Technologies with Axion Power International: $34.3 million

OTHERS: 


Also, there’s ReVolt Technology that in June 2010, was awarded a $5 million grant from the DOE’s Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E), of which even though it was a Bush administration program, the ARPA-E “remained unfunded until Obama injected $415 million into the program as part of the 2009 stimulus bill.”

Revolt also benefited from Business Energy Tax Credits, while Oregon chipped in with $5 million in taxpayer-backed loans. Revolt, a Portland-based company, which specialized in developing zinc-air flow battery systems, ” According to Sustainable Business Oregon, “The company had been developing a zinc-air battery technology that it said could deliver twice the energy of conventional rechargeable battery technologies, such as lithium-ion.”

Taxpayer money lost: Revolt earned its place in the Heritage Foundation’s “Green Graveyard” when it declared bankruptcy on October 17, 2012. This was despite the fact it had been offered a whopping [at least] $10 million in funds from federal, state, and local governments,” noted the Heritage Foundation in November 2012, when they also placed ReVolt’s bad bet at $10 million.


$2 Billion of Obama Biofuel Bucks funded “not so shovel-ready” risky projects, fueled by more green corruption

This Green Corruption File opened with the new study that was published by the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, which found that “green cars” are NOT very “green” at all.

I’ve been exposing the amount of money that the Obama administration has spent on his “green car revolution,” opening up with three main categories: Electric cars and their supporting paraphernalia, hybrid cars as well as ethanol used as fuel.

As documented in the beginning of this post, “Ethanol is a renewable, domestically produced alcohol fuel made from plant material, such as corn, sugar cane, or grasses.”

According to the DOE, “Using ethanol can reduce oil dependence and greenhouse gas emissions. Ethanol fuel use in the U.S. has increased dramatically from about 1.7 billion gallons in 2001 to about 13.2 billion in 2013.”

As a reminder, those behind the December 2014 study beg to differ: “ethanol isn’t so green, either,” which was reported by the Associated Press:

“If we’re using ethanol for environmental benefits, for air quality
and climate change, we’re going down the wrong path,” study co-author
Jason Hill added.

Also, despite the fact that some will argue that ethanol “can ruin car engines, it’s bad for the environment, and it raises taxes, gas and food prices,” the Obama administration continues to dump millions of tax dollars into this fuel source.

A while back (August 2013), I dedicated an entire Green Corruption File on the taxpayer money being spent on biofuels: “Billions of Obama biofuel bucks funded ‘not so shovel-ready’ risky projects, fueled by more green corruption.”

In short: Approximately $2 billion went toward funding 30 potentially risky biofuel projects, including advanced biofuels, which is consider a high-risk investment. At that time, I found that about one-third of these taxpayer-funded biofuel projects were having issues. 
Moreover, while many have survived or been revived by government assistance and renewable energy mandates, most, if not all, rely heavily upon taxpayer funds. And, as usual most of these projects have direct ties to the president and other high-ranking Democrats.
These funds, which included ethanol, algae, and other bright ideas, came from the DOE as well as the USDA.

  1. Department of Energy funded 19 biofuel projects worth $600 million, of which the monies came from the 2009 stimulus package
  2. Department of Agriculture, since 2009, dished out $1.02 billion loan guarantees to ten biofuel projects
Here is the list from my August 2013 Biofuel Report. Note: Asterisks* denotes proven cronyism, while I’ve marked in red those that were having issues, and I’ve highlighted the projects using and/or producing “ethanol.” 

  1. Abengoa, the Spanish Conglomerate*: In 2007, DOE grant up to $76 million from the Bush administration / Abengoa also received a $132 million loan guarantee through the 1705 DOE stimulus created program to “to support the development of a commercial-scale cellulosic ethanol plant” in Hugoton, Kansas. This deal was announced on August 19, 2011, and finalized on September 29, 2011. And, despite our efforts to alert the masses about the Abengoa Atrocities, the massive plant (cellulosic biorefinery), of which they claim, “utilizes corn stover residues that do not compete with food or feed grain,” opened in October 2014.
  2. Algenol Biofuels, Inc.*: $25 million stimulus grant (01/19/2010) to “convert carbon dioxide into ethanol using Algenol’s proprietary DIRECT TO ETHANOL® algae technology, which was first announced to be in @ Freeport, TX
  3. American Process, Inc. (API): $17.95 million stimulus grant (01/31/2010) to “produce fuel and potassium acetate, a compound with many industrial applications, using processed wood generated by Decorative Panels International, an existing hardboard manufacturing facility in Alpena, MI”
  4. Amyris, Inc.*: $25 million stimulus grant (12/28/2009) to “produce a diesel substitute through the fermentation of sweet sorghum” @ Emeryville, CA
  5. Archer Daniels Midland (ADM): In December 2009, ADM was awarded a $24.8 million stimulus grant to “use acid to break down biomass which can be converted to liquid fuels or energy” @ Decatur, IL. 
  6. BlueFire Renewables Inc.: In December 2009, the largest single stimulus grant of $81 million went to BlueFire Ethanol Fuels Inc. (BFRE) to “construct a facility that produces ethanol fuel from woody biomass, mill residue, and sorted municipal solid waste” @ Fulton, MS. / #1 with ISSUES
  7. Elevance: $2.5 million stimulus grant (December 2009) to “complete preliminary engineering design for a future facility producing jet fuel, renewable diesel substitutes, and high‐value chemicals from plant oils and poultry fat” @ Newton, IA / #2 with ISSUES, but resolved
  8. Enerkem: $50 million stimulus grant (12/30/2009) for a “project to be sited at an existing landfill and use feedstocks such as woody biomass and biomass removed from municipal solid waste to produce ethanol and other green chemicals through gasification and catalytic processes” @Pontotoc, MS / January 2011 also the recipient of USDA
  9. Gas Technology Institute (GTI): $2.5 million stimulus grant (December 2009) to “complete preliminary engineering design for a novel process to produce green gasoline and diesel from woody biomass, agricultural residues, and algae” @ Des Plaines, IL
  10. Haldor Topsoe, Inc.: $25 million stimulus grant (12/28/2009) for a “pilot plant to convert wood to green gasoline” @ Des Plaines, IL 
  11. ICM, Inc.: $25 million stimulus grant (12/04/2009) to “modify an existing corn‐ethanol facility to produce cellulosic ethanol from switchgrass and energy sorghum using biochemical conversion processes” @ St. Joseph, MO
  12. INEOS Bio/New Planet Bioenergy: $50 million stimulus grant (12/30/2009) to “produce ethanol and electricity from wood and vegetative residues and construction and demolition materials” @ Vero Beach, FL / January 2011, also the recipient of a USDA loan guarantee worth $75 million (finalized) 
  13. Logos/EdeniQ Technologies*: $20.4 million stimulus grant (03/30/2010) to “convert switchgrass and woody biomass into ethanol” @ Visalia, CA 
  14. Mascoma*: Mascoma Corporation is a cellulosic biomass-to-ethanol company that has received federal and state funding since its founding in 2006: Then in December 2011, Mascoma received up to $80 million in DOE funding “to assist in the design, construction and operation of a commercial-scale hardwood cellulosic ethanol facility in Kinross, Michigan.” This $80 million was awarded to Mascoma despite the fact that this project had only created three jobs in three years. It should be noted that in October 2008, Mascoma –– for their Michigan facility as well –– had also received a total of $26.0 million in funding from the DOE and an overall contribution of $23.5 million from the State of Michigan. / #3 with ISSUES
  15. Myriant (BioEnergy International, LLC): $50 million stimulus grant (01/20/2010) to “biologically produce succinic acid from sorghum” @ Lake Providence, LA / This project is also funded with $25 million from the USDA’s Rural Development B&I Loan Guarantee Program (June 2012) and a $10 million grant (2010) from the Lake Providence Port Commission and the Louisiana Department of Transportation –
  16. POET/DSM Advanced Biofuels, LLC*: The POET Project LIBERTY (primarily corn stover) in Emmetsburg, IA has been part of the DOE BETO for a while. And, in September 2009, additional DOE funds were awarded to this project, of which at that time “the two grant increases will bring the total financial commitment from DOE to $100 million.” Plus, $20 million in financial assistance from the State of Iowa (could be more?) / Was also awarded $105 million loan guarantee through 1705 DOE (stimulus created) program but POET voluntarily withdrew in January 2012 due to availability of private financing –
  17. Red Shield Acquisition, LLC (RSA): The Red Shield Acquisition integrated biorefinery, Old Town, ME, converts wood to sugars for feedstock. In 2008, RSE Pulp and Chemical, a subsidiary of Red Shield Environmental LLC, received up to $30 million for a wood-based ethanol facility at an existing pulp mill in Old Town, ME / #4 with ISSUES
  18. Renewable Energy Institute International (REII): $20 million stimulus grant (04/14/2010) to “produce high‐quality green diesel from agriculture and forest residues” @ Toledo, OH
  19. Rentech ClearFuels: $23 million stimulus grant (01/29/2010) to “produce renewable diesel and jet fuel from woody biomass by integrating ClearFuels’ and Rentech’s conversion technologies” @ Commerce City, CO / #5 with ISSUES, yet it seems that it was completed prior…
  20. Sapphire Energy, Inc.*: $50 million stimulus grant (12/29/2009) to “cultivate algae in ponds that will ultimately be converted into green fuels, such as jet fuel and diesel” @ Columbus, NM /November 2011, also the recipient of a USDA loan guarantee worth $43.6 million (finalized and recently paid back as mentioned earlier in this post) / August 1, 2013, Sapphire Energy snagged another $5 million DOE algae grant.
  21. Solazyme, Inc.*: $21.8 million stimulus grant (December 2009) to “produce algae oil that can be converted to oil‐based fuels” @ Riverside, PA, but it states that their pilot project is in Peoria, IL/ Plus part of the $12 million biofuel contract with the U.S. Navy 
  22. UOP, LLC*: $25 million stimulus grant (12/31/2009) to “integrate existing technology from Ensyn and UOP to produce green gasoline, diesel, and jet fuel from agricultural residue, woody biomass, dedicated energy crops, and algae” @ Kapolei, HI 
  23. Verenium*: In 2008, Verenium was awarded a grant from the DOE under a $40 million program to support the development of small-scale cellulosic ethanol biorefinery plants for their project in Jennings, LA. / Approximately 12 million from Obama’s DOE and the State of Florida (Back in 2010, Verenium was “banking on” one of those DOE loan guarantees to help it build its now-delayed first commercial cellulosic ethanol plant.) / #6 with ISSUES
  24. ZeaChem, Inc.*: $25 million stimulus grant (04/27/2010) to “use purpose‐grown hybrid poplar trees to produce fuel‐grade ethanol using hybrid technology” @ Boardman, OR / September 2011, part of a $40 million USDA grant / January 2012, also the recipient of a USDA loan guarantee worth $232.5 million (Conditional loan) / #7 with ISSUES, financial and jobs
  25. LOANS ONLY START HERE: Chemtex International, Inc.: August 2012, $99 million for miscanthus and switchgrass @ NC / (finalized)
  26. Coskata*: January 2011, $250 million for woody biomass @ AL / #8 with ISSUES
  27. Fiberight, LLC: January 2012, $25 million for “municipal solid waste, seed corn waste” @ IA (conditional loan) / Fiberight also received a $2.9 million grant from the Iowa Power Fund in 2010.
  28. Fremont Community Digester (FCD): May 2011, $12.8 million for “organic waste, agricultural residues” @ MI (finalized) / This project also received a 1603 stimulus grant “that covers up to one third of eligible capital costs.” 
  29. Fulcrum Sierra BioFuels, LLC: August 2012, $105 million for “municipal solid waste” @ NV (finalized) / Also seeking $85 million funding from the DOE loan program
  30. Range Fuels, Inc*: January 2009, $80 million for “woody biomass” @ GA (finalized but project failed, costing taxpayers millions) / #9 with ISSUES: Failed in December 2011 
  31. SoyMor: June 2009, $25 million for “corn or soybean oil” @ MN (finalized)

As I noted much earlier, the Obama administration is doling out more “green car” cash via the ATVM loan program as well as other DOE programs. And, since the post only showcased some of the government “green car deals,” additional digging into the electric car stimulus grants and other monies is needed. Lastly, another visit into the billions of biofuel bucks is a must.

So, stay tuned for PART TWO of Fueling Friends and Failure… 

NOTE: Two of the DOE loans as well as the some of the failures from the “battery stimulus grant winners” are also found in my January 2014 “Cleantech Crash” report, documenting 59 failures: 32 Obama-backed green energy companies that have already gone under; the five bailouts; and the 22 green energy companies/projects that, at that time, were on our troubled watch list –– costing taxpayers over $3 billion, with $14.2 billion at risk. Yet, a new report, which will dramatically increase these figures, is in the works as well. 


“Climate Change Poses a Graver Threat than Terrorism”


Keep in mind that “green cars” are just a fraction of President Obama’s enormous plan to “protect the Earth…” to infinity and beyond. As we drown in debt, he’s been pushing his 2016 left-wing $4 trillion budget that, as usual, taxes the rich in order to support his Big Government polices.  Yet, the irony here is that his green energy programs fund the rich.

Moreover, his massive ploy “Goes All-In on Climate Change,” wrote the National Journal.

Why not?


After all, “climate change poses a graver threat day-in and day-out to Americans than terrorism,” recently stated Mr. Obama –– a big part of this administrations’ climate change (global warming or cooling, depending on the decade) never-ending fear-mongering campaign.

While some place the new climate change tab at $7 billion of U.S. tax dollars, others report that “more than $10 billion for programs to both mitigate and adapt to the effects of global climate change” is proposed in the budget.

Nevertheless, there is no discrepancy on that fact that these funds spread across multiple agencies, including the EPA as well as the departments of Energy and Defense –– and again, it funds “poor countries to help them deal with climate change.”

And as usual, while punishing his enemies, the oil and gas industry, President Obama is rewarding his friends –– with even a key ally and green corruption villain, the George Soros-funded Center for American Progress, applauding the move:

One of the most aggressive climate-related proposals in Obama’s budget is a call to reform how different kinds of energy companies pay taxes. Under Obama’s proposal, oil and gas companies would be stripped of billions of dollars in tax incentives they receive — $44 billion over a decade; to be specific — and renewable energy companies would reap the benefits. Over that same decade, the budget would allocate $31.5 billion toward permanently reinstating the Production Tax Credit for wind energy, and permanently extending the 30 percent investment for solar energy systems.

Did you catch that? Permanent.

Even as Big Wind is a Big Winner in the new Obama proposal, they, despite harm to the environment and wildlife, which I and others have exposed many times, win again. Meanwhile, the Investment Tax Credit (ITC), is another controversial tax “benefit that was used by Solyndra,” the scandal-ridden solar firm that tanked with over $570.4 million or taxpayer money –– only to be reborn as the poster child for “Obama’s Green Corruption.”

And that’s not all that solar gets. “Government support for the solar industry is vast, with at least 345 different federal initiatives that spread across 20 agencies, according to a report released by the Taxpayers Protection Alliance (TPA).” This was just revealed by the Washington Free Beacon, which calculated the ITC and gave this alarming figure: “Solar Energy Subsidies Cost $39 Billion Per Year.”

But what’s another $10 billion added to an aggressive, intrusive and deceptive plot to “save the planet,” of which from 2009 until 2014, already costs U.S. taxpayers over $150 billion of hard-core cash.

This $150 figure came from an April 2012 report entitled, “Beyond Boom & Bust,” which was prepared by various associates of the Breakthrough Institute, Brookings Institute, and the World Resources Institute, and factored in both stimulus and non-stimulus funds. However, it missed a variety of programs that were created via the failed trillion-dollar stimulus law, of which $100 billion was earmarked for “green energy” initiatives – and, today we can celebrate the Recovery Act’s 6th anniversary.

For example, the aforementioned findings didn’t factor in the on-going 1603 Grant Program, which has already dished out over $23 billion of free taxpayer cash.

Even as President Obama’s “green” tab conservatively exceeds $200 billion, it still doesn’t take into account the billions his administration has used on other “global warming programs,” nor the “$7.45 billion spent in helping other countries deal with climate change.”

Then, there’s the “Ex-Im Bank that is staffed up with politically connected green energy executives [and other green friends of the White House],” which, under Team Obama, has continually doled out billions in green loans, pumping up other green crony deals here in the Unites States as well as overseas…and beyond.

And, did you know that there is a Green War being waged? 

Needless to say, this is not at the Department of Energy (DOE), but the Department of Defense (DoD), costing (wasting) hundreds of millions of dollars. Back in 2012, the Washington Free Beacon took note: “The federal government launched 679 renewable energy initiatives in 2010. The DoD accounted for 116 initiatives while the DOE started less than 100.”

What about this $4 billion bright idea? “US Taxpayers To Subsidize India’s Solar Energy Boom,” which was recently reported by the Daily Caller.

No surprise there, because, we taxpayers are being screwed over by the “law-breaking, American hating,” Spanish conglomerate, Abengoa, that was subsidized with over $3.6 billion in stimulus loans and grants from U.S. taxpayers, including for biofuels, which was highlighted earlier.

What about the rest of the “green” waste, fraud, abuse and failure?

In closing…

Although this Green Corruption File unleashed most of the billions of taxpayer money that has been blown on “green cars that are NOT so green,” there is more ground-breaking hypocrisy on the green energy front to report.

Me visiting the Tesla Auto dealership here in the desert.
$70k –– with $7,500 fed rebate as well as
$2,500 from the state of CA.

The former Vice President Al Gore and his minions are flying around in private jets –– which, by the way, use petroleum –– promoting the dangers of climate change. Meanwhile, Gore, via the Global Commission on the Economy & Climate (GCEC), is now pushing for “$90 trillion in spending to ban cars from every major city in the world and make them more dense.”

I wonder if that ban includes Gore’s and his buddies’ electric cars.

So, with two years left in office, and the president claiming that he can part the red seas, we can expect much more costly climate action, crony capitalism and corporate welfare to play out.

Lastly, as Oklahoma Republican Sen. James Inhofe rebutted: Obama’s climate agenda is nothing but a “wealth redistribution scheme.” But in reality, there are two parts to this scam: the Obama administration is also “spreading the wealth” to his millionaire and billionaire green cronies. 

It’s time to SLAM on the brakes!