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  • Two More Stimulus-Backed Solar Companies Announce Layoffs

    A pair of foreign-owned solar companies that benefited from a combined $84 million in Energy Department tax credits have announced they will lay off employees.

    One of the companies, German-owned SolarWorld, was integral in the fight for tariffs against the importation of Chinese photovoltaic solar panels. The other, Chinese company SunTech, blamed those tariffs for its own layoffs.

    Both companies benefited from the Energy Department’s stimulus-funded Advanced Energy Manufacturing (48C) Tax Credit. The 48C credit is worth up to 30% of the cost of manufacturing qualifying green energy projects.

    SolarWorld received a credit worth $82 million, while SunTech’s was worth $2.1 million.

    Both companies announced this week that they will shed some employees. SolarWorld, which announced a 47% revenue decline in the third quarter, blamed a potential 37 layoffs at its Oregon plant on “illegal” Chinese trade practices.

    SunTech said the U.S. International Trade Commission’s 35.95% tariff on Chinese solar panels was partially responsible for the 50 impending layoffs at its Arizona production facilities.

    While heavy Chinese subsidies do reduce the cost of solar panels from that country, Heritage’s Derek Scissors warned against replicating those policies in testimonybefore the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee in June.

    “The U.S. boasts a far better energy and environmental record than China,” Scissors explained, “and moving in China’s direction would be very risky.”

    SunTech and SolarWorld are the latest additions to a long list of taxpayer-backed green energy companies that have gone bankrupt, laid off workers, or otherwise hit dire financial straits.

    Posted in Featured, Scribe [slideshow_deploy]

    26 Responses to Two More Stimulus-Backed Solar Companies Announce Layoffs

    1. They are downsizing employees because they can no longer suckle at the teat of the bloated Washington pig who gave them all that money. The company owners got rich and the employees get food stamps.

      How’s all that Hope and Change working out for you?

      • John Detwiler says:

        When?Oh when? Ls the house going to say no to Obama's excesses. They have the power refuse funding these useless programs. Obama's fixation on Green Energy is twisted. Let's get our ducks in order. Energy is first of course, but certainly not Green energy. This will take time and the government needs to step aside and let the free market take care of it. Our current quest for energy dependence should be on Nuclear, Natural gas and oil. Led Obama be the figurehead of our country. But let the politicians do the work. Obama's ideas have proven to be a costly burden to our energy program. I suggest he shut up and just sign bills put forward by congress. But knowing him and his ego maniacal frame of mind, this probably isn't possible. He will probably veto anything that doesn't bear his narcissistic stamp of approval.

    2. Chris says:

      It's interesting that Suntech is blaming their layoffs on the US tariffs on Chinese solar panels as the modules produced in Arizona should be exempt from those tariffs.

    3. Joanne Vogt says:

      Noticed the company's were German and Chinese…way to spend our stimulus money Obama!!!

    4. More taxpayer money thrown down a rat hole by President Obama…more layoffs. Hostess could have used $94 million and it was an American company not German or Chinese.

      • John Detwiler says:

        How did you manage to criticize Obama and still get your message across. I did the same but evidently the Adm. felt that they had to protect that clown we have as our Amateur-in-Chief.

    5. David Duarte says:

      The great economist and investor extraordinaire, BHO, picks two more winners

    6. Scott Kuehne says:

      I wonder how many non-union teachers this money could have been able to employ? Mr. Obama do you think this money could have been used to help change the education level in Chicago since the kids that graduate there have the reading level of a 5th grader?

    7. Dana Roodman says:

      On with the body count.

    8. Truth Teller says:

      "The company owners got rich and the employees get food stamps."

      It is ignorant and obscene that you would say this about this issue, when the very same business model is the one that Walmart uses every day, and as the largest private employer in the US, no less. But you'll never hear a blind consevative idealogue say a peep about that. People like you really need to make a serious and profound reality check.

      Read something like this to remove the scales from your eyes, brother. http://www.dailykos.com/story/2012/06/20/1101630/

      • tnemptynester says:

        This article has nothing to do with a business model. It's about the government using the taxpayer funds to lend to unqualified business's. These Solar companies have not been in business long and have financail problems. The money that was loaned to them will never be paid because the companies will file for bankruptcy. The government should not be giving loans to any business when it has to borrow the money to loan to them. Does anybody understand that the USA is BROKE. The government gives aid to unfriendly countries who hate us, loans money to companies who can't pay it back, gives more and more entitlements to those who don't even work, don't finish high school so they can't get a job, grant the Dream Act to illegal aliens who's parents are living here illegally and promising them a college education, sticks companies with the obligation to provide Obama Care for it's employees.

        • tnemptynester says:

          Obama has mandated The Affordable Care Act cost to employors They are not nanny's for their employees. If anyone should pay for Obama care it should be the government not companies. Why is the Federal Government giving loans to an electric car manufacturer in Finland that will not produce any jobs and infact they haven't produced a car yet. Who is going to buy the cars. American can't afford them. Why did Obama agree to purchase oil from South American and deny permits for drilling of oil in our own country. So Obama doesn't want American to drill but it's perfectly okey for a foreign country to do so and we purchase the oil from them. Where is Obama's GREEN energy idea when it come to clean energy?

    9. Please help me understand this? Is my reasoning wrong here. First we put a tariff on Chinese made solar panels sold in the united states. Then we turn around and give them 20000000 million tax credit. So what is the point in tariffs if we just give it right back to them behind the magiccurtain. And my second question is why would we put a tariff on China if the Chinese are subsidizing the manufacturing of the solar panelled.would it not make more sense to buy as many panels. As we can from China which costs them money and the American consumer saves money. Seems like a win win for us.

    10. “The U.S. boasts a far better energy and environmental record than China,” Scissors explained, “and moving in China’s direction would be very risky.”
      -Some researches show that producing electricity by solar panel produce more pollutant than the same amount by coal, unless the method of making such panel is fundamentally changed.

    11. Ruthie says:

      No Choice that Obama makes is ever good and Our People in the United States are the ones suffering. Why did people Vote for Obama? Welfare? Freedom of aborting/killing innocent children? Obama is drowning American's and it gets worse by the minute and we are allowing him to do it. He keeps sending millions of Our Tax Dollars to Africa to help them go green, build homes for them and support certain ones while our children suffer. Obama needs to pack his crap up and leave OUR Country.

    12. RayCathode says:

      Hey Wyatt, 55+ and no other comment – guess you said it all.

    13. Sierra Varptr says:

      Large wind and thermal solar can stand on their own, are profitable, renewable, and make good sense. Solar electric is roughly 5% efficient, and has a negative cash flow even with subsidies, and just doesn't provide enough energy to be remotely desirable. So why on earth would you invest in it except for some remote desert and mountain locations. Typical house takes 15 Kw to heat in winter. Sunshine provides 1 kw/ square meter. But with 5% efficiency, that's 300 square meters to heat a house! Totally ridiculous!! A square of collectors over 51 feet on an edge, vs. thermal solar, up to 80% efficient, with a needed collective surface of 20-30 square meters, roughly 15 feet on an edge, roughly 2, 4'x8' plastic mirrors, easily fitting on a roof or a massive desert facility to heat a town! So why is Obama so messed up? Easy, the Marx brothers, groucho, harpo, chico, gummo, zeppo, and last but certainly least old insipid losero, the i'll steal your stuffo guy…..

    14. Tom Leist says:

      All these idiots that voted for that moron, I hope they are the ones that feel the pinch, the
      y bought it, they own it.

    15. don says:

      gee who would have thought…remember one thing his goal is reduce as much as possible Americas ability to be self sustaining…wether on global scale or individual one…he doesnt want job creation he wants job reduction…his words and actions dont match up…but them again no liars does…the devestating thing is that there are millions of those in this country who are in a cloud when it comes to reality..and truly believe we are headed in the right direction…thats scary.

    16. It is going to work out for Obama. The owners will give him donations, and the food stampers will vote for him, during his run for third term as President.

    17. The Loan Guarantee Program is working at a lower level of risk than its bipartisan creators in Congress expected. While a small number of companies that received loan guarantees have not made it, the program has proven even more effective than anticipated – even when you take Solyndra into account.

      Here are the facts:

      - Of the 1,300 clean energy companies that received stimulus dollars only 5 (less than 1%) have declared bankruptcy. http://bit.ly/RlrPOl

      - DOE’s Loan Guarantee Program—the source of investment for many of these companies—was created in 2005 with bipartisan support and signed by President George W Bush. http://cnnmon.ie/LBryTy

      - Loan guarantees have a long history in the United States and have been used to support many of America’s critical industries, including housing, transportation, and agriculture. http://bit.ly/uV14lf

      - Analysts predict that over the next decade, $800 billion – $1.2 trillion will be invested in the solar industry globally. (http://bit.ly/InVamF) That is not the profile of a failing or government-dependent industry.

      Get more facts here: http://bit.ly/YrHKOn

      Find all the facts on renewable energy at http://www.energyfactcheck.com and on Twitter at @EnergyFactCheck

    18. Terry Sturgeon says:

      The last paragraph would read more accurately if it said, "SunTech and SolarWorld are the latest additions to a long list of Administration-backed, taxpayer-funded green energy companies that have gone bankrupt, laid off workers, or otherwise hit dire financial straits."

    19. RichardF says:

      why are we wasting money of foreign countries projects when we have so many here at home that need help. need to stop all stimulus unless it assist this country to get back on its feet. the present administration has no idea how to operate to our best interests. just padding their pockets. obummmma will probably be hired to these companies after his ass is out of office and we will still be paying him his present salary and secret service people. if he needs protection he can hire is own or pay the price.

    20. Chris says:

      If at first you don't succeed… Fossil energy is definitely not the future.

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