Despite Solyndra’s abrupt closing and bankruptcy announcement last month, the Department of Energy (DOE) is undeterred. Just this month, the agency made two more loan guarantees worth millions of dollars to alternative energy firms.

And, as was the case with Solyndra, officials and investors with the two new companies have strong financial ties to President Barack Obama.

On September 7, the DOE announced its plan to guarantee 80 percent — or $275 million — of a $344 million private loan taken out by the firm SolarCity. The company installs rooftop solar systems that harvests electricity SolarCity then sells.

The guarantee means that if SolarCity’s project does not succeed, the DOE will use taxpayer money to pay back 80 percent of the company’s private loans.

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