Since enactment in 2005, the Energy Policy Act has allowed the Department of Energy (DOE) to gamble away taxpayer dollars on many unnecessary and wasteful projects. Thankfully, the DOE’s website provides us with a timeline of exactly how they have wasted taxpayers’ hard earned dollars.
Most are familiar with the past failures of the program, some of which were highly publicized. For instance the infamous taxpayer funded boondoggles Solyndra, Abound Solar and Fisker, which left Americans on the hook for a combined $935 million in federal guarantees. Naturally, one would think since then some level of accountability would be due, however the DOE still has yet to improve its Loan Guarantee Program.
According to a recent report from the Government of Accountability Office (GAO), the DOE’s Loan Guarantee Program will cost taxpayers $2.2 billion over the lifetime of the loans.The report looked at funding for 34 items with a total price tag of about $28 billion. Five of those taxpayer-supported ventures have defaulted costing Americans $807 million. Of course, this is also not accounting for the $312 million in administration costs, which taxpayers will also be footing the bill for.
While green-energy advocates continue to push for more government-backed deals, claiming “green based projects” will create jobs, Americans are getting little to no return on their investments. With $34.7 billion in DOE guaranteed loans and a little over 2,000 permanent jobs created, each job created cost tax payers roughly $6.7 million per job, a hefty price for projects that sponsor now bankrupt corporations.
These taxpayer-funded failures on items such as solar and hybrid vehicle start-ups not only waste much needed revenue but have Americans footing the bill for projects that will fail to see completion.
While the Department of Energy will conveniently fail to mention that taxpayers are estimated to be paying off over $2 billion worth of pointlessly funded DOE projects, Americans can expect to see this trend continue if these taxpayer backed sweetheart deals continue.