U.S. Dept. of Energy Allots $4 Billion in Renewable Energy Loan Aid

Posted: 05/06/2014  browse the blog archive
U.S. Dept. of Energy Allots $4 Billion in Renewable Energy Loan Aid

In a press release issued in early April, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) unveiled a draft loan guarantee solicitation that allots up to $4 billion in loan aid for renewable energy companies.  

Currently, the solicitation will offer loan guarantees for innovative projects that limit or avoid greenhouse gas emissions, with an emphasis on advanced electric grid technology and storage, biofuels for conventional vehicles, energy from waste products, enhancing existing facilities, and energy efficiency.  The DOE hopes to have the loan offering plan finalized by June so that financing may be awarded by the end of 2014 or early 2015. 

The DOE credits the loan program with galvanizing private investment in industrial scale solar plants in the U.S. and hopes to replicate that achievement with new renewable energy technologies that are on the brink of financial viability. 

Reuters reported that the loan program came under criticism following the high-profile collapse of Solyndra, a now-bankrupt solar panel manufacturer, which was awarded a $535 million loan guarantee.  Republicans accused the program of favoring political allies of Obama and backing bad bets.  The Obama administration denied these allegations and claimed to award loans based on the merits of the projects.  According to the DOE, only about 3 percent of the department’s loan portfolio has suffered losses, far below the amount Congress had budgeted when it created the program.

The Chanler Group is actively engaged in the review and analysis of incentive-based renewable energy programs to determine potential benefits to our clients.  Global energy consumption continues to increase each year and, with this increase, the demand for safe, clean, and unlimited energy is on the rise.  The Federal and State governments promote this interest through a variety of financially-beneficial incentives.  Our understanding of these laws allows us to guide homeowners, businesses, and/or developers through the various ways to take advantage of these incentive-based benefits.  With the appreciation that renewable energy laws and regulations are constantly changing, The Chanler Group is committed to investing in its understanding and practice of this area of law.