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Feds Rush Through Another $5 Billion in Solar Energy Loans


From the Associated Press:

The deals announced Friday include a $1.5 billion loan guarantee to Florida-based NextEra Energy and other investors that bought a planned 550-megawatt solar farm on federal land in Southern California from First Solar, as well as $646 million to Illinois-based Exelon Corp. for a 230-megawatt solar plant near Los Angeles. Next Era Energy Resources and GE Energy Financial Services bought the Desert Sunlight project from First Solar, while Exelon bought the Antelope Valley project. First Solar will continue to build and operate both projects.

A third project, worth $1.2 billion, will help San Jose-based SunPower Corp. build a 250-megawatt solar plant in California, while $1.4 billion will go San Francisco-based Prologis Inc. to support installation of about 750 solar rooftop panels in 28 states.

The loan program expires on Friday.

Rep. Cliff Stearns, R-Fla., chairman of a House energy subcommittee that is investigating Solyndra, called the rush to approve loans unseemly.

“In a last-minute mad dash to beat the stimulus deadline, DOE rushed out an unprecedented tidal wave of taxpayer dollars–and the question still remains, `Where are the jobs?’ `’ Stearns said Friday. “American taxpayers are already on the hook for half a billion dollars for the sins of Solyndra. What surprises does DOE have in store from (Friday’s) rush job?”

Read the whole thing here.


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