Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Here is a head scratcher.

SolarCity revives military homes solar project

"(Reuters) - Solar power developer SolarCity and Bank of America Merrill Lynch will go ahead with a plan to build more than $1 billion in new solar projects on military housing, despite their failure to win a U.S. loan guarantee."

"Under the new pact, Bank of America will finance the debt portion of the project, while SolarCity will create equity funds that qualify for a tax renewable energy tax break."

"What we've done here is create a financing model that can make distributed solar affordable on a huge scale without a guarantee from the federal government."

When I first read this story - I honestly couldn't believe it. If virtually your only source of money is from the government, it really isn't a financing model. The government is quite "fickle".

What could motivate a bank to lend this kind of money when there is nothing but bad news out of this sector. Don't believe me - I read this article just this morning!

Solar power bankruptcies loom as prices collapse

"Solyndra was just the beginning," said Jessie Pichel, head of clean energy research at the investment bank Jefferies & Co. "We're going to see a lot of companies go bankrupt."

Just how many? Of the few hundred or so solar panel makers worldwide, just 20 to 40 are expected to remain standing in a few years time, said Mark Bachman, a renewables analyst at Avian Securities."

And if you think they are joking - they are not! The green energy sector is collapsing faster than even I could have predicted. Just the headlines from this week alone.

REC to cut Norway output as solar market suffers

"Nov 29 (Reuters) - Norwegian solar firm Renewable Energy Corp plans to halt 60 percent of the capacity of its 650 megawatt multicrystalline wafer facility at Heroeya as global economic turbulence has cut demand and depressed prices, the firm said."

When anyone has to cut production by 60%, you know bad things are going to happen.

A123 Systems lays off 125 workers at Michigan battery plants

I didn't actually even know about this company. Apparently they supply batteries to Fisker Automotive. Who quite apparently is not doing well. Interestingly I saw the article was updated to reflect things wouldn't be so bad because they got a contract from GM. (chuckle) I think this is their second layoff this year.

AMSC cuts 20 percent of workforce

"AMSC continues to hit setbacks with today’s announcement that it has cut 20 percent of its staff in an attempt to move the Devens-based wind technology firm toward profitability. News of the layoffs come one month after the company abandoned plans made in March to buy Finnish company The Switch Engineering Oy for $265 million after it was unable to raise enough money."

Then really - the best headline of them all. Evergreen Solar only managed to get 11 million dollars in their bankruptcy sale. The company only walked away with a 50 million loss. They listed assets of $424.5 million and had debts of $485.6 million. Here.

You and I taxpayer will never know how much we lost in tax dollar subsidies for this company. I read this morning the gment has scrubbed the "grant" records. If you are diligent enough you can look at old articles that list grants in piecemeal.

So again I ask. Why would BofA still be shoveling out money in a declining solar market. I mean, the whole declining housing market worked out so well for them.

It is really a sad day in America when you actually have to start rooting for the short sellers to make the market more honest. And I hate those fucks. I know they serve a purpose. I also know that when they latch on to your company, a small stumble could lead to almost certain death. They pack on.

Right now however, the government and the banks are above the law. The only people with the power are the short sellers. Unfortunatly.

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