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Thread: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

  1. #61
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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleAye View Post
    The fact is, we need oil for a lot more than just burning it. Plastics comes to mind immediately. I'm typing on plastics and reading on plastics and later will call and receive calls on devices made with plastics. We'll need oil for a lot of very good reasons in the century to come. So let's not waste it by burning up to 85% of it up in cars when we can make cars that don't need oil at all. Then we can rely on strictly domestic oil for the plastics and other uses for many many years to come.
    What alternative to oil is there for cars, that is not overly subsidized to make it affordable (ethanol), that will give you the same power, and running duration in a car?

    Don't confuse me with environmentalists. I'm interested primarily in the energy security of the USA. If we don't have the power to save ourselves, we'll never have the power to save our animals either. So we make sure WE aren't ****ed up and then we'll have the time to be sure our wildlife isn't ****ed up either. Environmentalists will have to wait until we get our energy squared away and then we can work on their concerns too. One thing at a time.
    I agree. Unfortunately envro's do not listen to such things. Blinders on they head in one direction, humans be damned.
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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by Arbo View Post
    What alternative to oil is there for cars, that is not overly subsidized to make it affordable (ethanol), that will give you the same power, and running duration in a car?
    The best overall option is electric. EVs. But we cannot ethically force Americans into EVs at gunpoint. China may do **** like that, but it's not our style. So while EVs are by far the best choice for future American energy security, it's still in a proto stage and far from perfect. The cost for the new tech is still too high and the range isn't good enough. Charging time is still too slow. New battery advances can change all this, but it needs time, and money. Battery researchers won't get that if there's no demand from automakers. Automakers won't create the demand if there's no demand for EV cars. How do you break the cycle? You create the demand for the cars by adding an incentive, otherwise known as a subsidy. In all honesty, you cannot create a new heavy industry with no current demand without first creating the product and gaining interest with price breaks. Once interest develops you can start ramping up production which will reduce the cost per unit. Once that creates even more interest you can sink profits into R&D to improve the product and thus create more interest.

    This is a common marketing and production cycle that exists in everything from mousetraps to guided missile warships. The only difference here is that the government is stepping in to help with the marketing cycle. Why should the government spend OUR money on this? Because if we don't run through years of marketing and development necessary NOW, while we aren't absolutely dying for energy, we'll have to do it when gas inevitably gets too costly to afford (and thereby food gets too costly to afford), we WILL be dying, and the process we're running through NOW cannot possibly happen fast enough. So if the people for whom EVs are appropriate would buy them NOW and provide the marketing impetus and feedback to improve the cars, then EVs will be just exactly what people will need when the time comes when we honest-to-goodness really need them. Production facilities will be poised and ready to support a sharp spike in demand. Popularity and a revised practicality will eliminate any need for further subsidies.
    Last edited by EagleAye; 04-07-12 at 12:28 AM.
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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    But do subsidies really ever go away?

    I agree EV's are not practical or affordable for most people. I drive a lot to make a living, an EV would not work, not enough duration, not even 1/10 of what I'd need. And the stuff like the Volt is a novelty car for the wealthy at it's price point.

    I see no reason to not open up more drilling, get more of our own oil to cover our own needs, while we await the miracle breakthrough that would make EV's 'better'. If we sit around waiting, we are still purchasing a load of oil that funds 'enemies'. And if and when EV's hit the point they need get to, then we will have all the drilling in place ever needed to get the oil for all the other stuff we use it for.
    "nah i think the way cons want to turn this into a political issue is funny though" - Philly Boss

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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by Arbo View Post
    But do subsidies really ever go away?
    A valid concern. Oil companies are posting record profits yet still receive $4 Billion in subsidies every year. We cannot make this mistake again.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arbo View Post
    I agree EV's are not practical or affordable for most people. I drive a lot to make a living, an EV would not work, not enough duration, not even 1/10 of what I'd need. And the stuff like the Volt is a novelty car for the wealthy at it's price point.
    Gads, you drive 400 miles per day? Sorry dude. My neighbor in Odessa had to drive about that much too. Such requirements do exist, but are not the rule. Most people commute below 25 miles per day. A $40K car is not only in the realm of the wealthy, but even the upper-middle class. So this places EVs in the price range of a lot of people. You can even find EVs for $17,500, but I don't think I would take one out on the highway. Besides, EVs at that price look like golf carts and that doesn't interest me.

    Quote Originally Posted by Arbo View Post
    I see no reason to not open up more drilling, get more of our own oil to cover our own needs, while we await the miracle breakthrough that would make EV's 'better'. If we sit around waiting, we are still purchasing a load of oil that funds 'enemies'. And if and when EV's hit the point they need get to, then we will have all the drilling in place ever needed to get the oil for all the other stuff we use it for.
    I'm not opposed to more domestic drilling. That's fine to me. But even the massive increase we're seeing now is a drop in the bucket compared to our needs as a nation. And even that won't relieve the price, since that is set on the international market. All the increased drilling means so far is that we're an exporter of gasoline, while Americans still pay insane costs at the pump. The cost for gas will still climb as increasing affluence in China, India, and Brazil means they consume more oil and force the cost of oil to shoot up. We can drill all we want but if won't help individual Americans much at all. EVs CAN help in this regard because a reduced need for oil can slow the steady climb of gas prices. Enough EVs and we can all forget about gas prices completely. And no one will give a **** if Iran closes the Straits of Hormuz or not.
    Last edited by EagleAye; 04-07-12 at 01:35 AM.
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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleAye View Post
    Nice. Good find. I actually worked in a call center that was connecting people who wanted solar to connect with SolarCity.

    Since you've worked in this area, what is the initial cost to the consumer to have solar panels installed? What is the reliabilty and maintainabilty of these panels?

    I think folks would be more open to going in this direction if it were affordable and they could see a return on their investment. We here about solar panels and never hear about the costs and returns.

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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    So it seems there will be an up hill battle in this area. On the East Coast there was a plan to put wind thingys in the Atlantic, of course to make it cost effective they needed to be close to the shore, and it was stopped by some "group". They complained about having to see them and interference with sail boats.

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    What conservative political hacks fail to mention every time they bring up these companies is that at the time the loan was made profit projections for these companies was strong and reliable and the market for solar power was quickly growing. Then we started to increase fracking and three cost for solar plant materials increased, making the ventures less profitable (short term). Three loans were not bad ideas from an economic stand point (when the radio cost of all the alternatives was taken into account) fortune just had other plans
    Hayek - too liberal for republicans

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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleAye View Post
    Gads, you drive 400 miles per day? Sorry dude. My neighbor in Odessa had to drive about that much too. Such requirements do exist, but are not the rule. Most people commute below 25 miles per day. A $40K car is not only in the realm of the wealthy, but even the upper-middle class. So this places EVs in the price range of a lot of people. You can even find EVs for $17,500, but I don't think I would take one out on the highway. Besides, EVs at that price look like golf carts and that doesn't interest me.
    Not all days, but it is not uncommon to do 200 a day. Some days a lot more, and occasionally less. It's not bad, I have XM, so you stay entertained.

    A $40K car may be in the realm of more than the wealthy, but not a $40K EV with limited space and duration. It doesn't make sense at that price for the majority of people. Around here, if you are gonna spend $40k, it's gonna be a truck or SUV. So your investment get's you a vehicle you can work and play with.
    "nah i think the way cons want to turn this into a political issue is funny though" - Philly Boss

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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by EagleAye View Post
    That would be in-correct. There are many tax breaks that support the petroleum inductry and only the petroleum industry. On top of that, there are other tax breaks where there is an overlap with your industry.
    Tell me what tax breaks ONLY the oil industry gets. All I hear about is their massive write offs for investments, that is the same break I get.

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    Re: Solar company bankrupt despite 'win-win' DOE loan

    Quote Originally Posted by longview View Post
    I am the last person to defend Obama, but Solyndra had a legitimate good concept
    The cost of goods sold price point at the time of the loan was about $600 for a 200 watt panel.
    The Solyndra panels have a much lower installation cost, so an $800 sales price would
    still be very competitive.
    The list price now for a 200 watt panel ( in pallet orders) is as low as $300.
    Solyndra had no way to know China would subsidies solar enough, to push the price that low.

    Most of the cost of Nuclear is in regulation. Someone who worked on the South Texas
    Project told me," When the weight of the paper equals the weight of the plant, they can turn it on."
    I have to disagree with you on this one,






    The FBI is investigating what happened with Solyndra, a solar panel company that got a $535 million government-backed loan with the help of the Obama White House over the objections of federal budget analysts.

    Obama and Vice President Joe Biden got a nice photo op. They got to make speeches about being "green." But then Solyndra went bankrupt. Americans lost jobs. Taxpayers got stuck with the bill. And members of Congress are now in high dudgeon and making speeches.

    Federal investigators want to know what role political fundraising played in the guarantee of the questionable loan. Washington bureaucrats warned the deal was lousy. And White House spokesmen flail desperately, like weakened victims in a cheesy vampire movie.

    So forget optics. What about smell? It smells bad, and it's going to smell worse.

    Or, did you really believe it when the White House mouthpieces who are also Chicago City Hall mouthpieces promised they were bringing a new kind of politics to Washington?

    This is not a new kind of politics. It's the old kind. The Chicago kind.

    And now the Tribune Washington Bureau has reported that the U.S. Department of Energy employee who helped monitor the Solyndra loan guarantee was one of Obama's top fundraisers.


    Barack Obama's Solyndra scandal smells like it came from Chicago's City Hall - Chicago Tribune

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