• 4 minutes Oil Price Editorial: Beware Of Saudi Oil Tanker Sabotage Stories
  • 7 minutes Mueller Report Brings Into Focus Obama's Attempted Coup Against Trump
  • 11 minutes Magic of Shale: EXPORTS!! Crude Exporters Navigate Gulf Coast Terminal Constraints
  • 14 minutes Wonders of Shale- Gas,bringing investments and jobs to the US
  • 12 mins Trump needs to educate US companies and citizens on Chinese Communist Party and People's Liberation Army. This is real ECONOMIC WARFARE. To understand Chinese warfare read General Sun Tzu's "Art of War" . . . written 500 B.C.
  • 22 mins Evil Awakens: Fascist Symbols And Rhetoric On Rise In Italian EU Vote
  • 3 hours Is $60/Bbl WTI still considered a break even for Shale Oil
  • 1 hour Level-Headed Analysis of the Future of U.S. Shale Oil Industry
  • 5 hours Asia Oil Refiners Mull Run Cuts With Margins At 16 yrs. Low For Season
  • 3 hours Trump bogged down in Mideast quagmire. US spent $Trillions, lost Thousands of lives, and lost goodwill. FOR WHAT? US interests ? WHAT INTEREST ? . . . . China greatest threat next 50 years.
  • 9 hours Devastating Sanctions: Iran and Venezuela hurting
  • 3 hours Why is Strait of Hormuz the World's Most Important Oil Artery
  • 33 mins Apartheid Is Still There: Post-apartheid South Africa Is World’s Most Unequal Country
  • 3 hours Misunderstanding between USA and Iran the cause of current stand off, I call BS
  • 4 hours ARAMCO BOARD: Former Dow Chemical CEO Andrew Liveris: I want to help Saudi Arabia become a 21st century economy
  • 5 hours IMO 2020 could create fierce competition for scarce water resources
  • 5 hours IMO2020 To scrub or not to scrub
Alt Text

Solar Stocks Are Booming This Year

The solar industry is on…

Alt Text

Is Solar Growth Really Lagging?

California is looking to pass…

Alt Text

Will U.S. Solar Survive The Trade War?

It’s been almost a full…

Gloria Gonzalez

Gloria Gonzalez

Gloria is a writer for Environmental Finance.Environmental Finance is the leading global publication covering the ever-increasing impact of environmental issues on the lending, insurance, investment…

More Info

Trending Discussions

The Solar Industry is Thriving and Solyndra was the Exception Not the Rule

The bankruptcy of solar panel manufacturer Solyndra should not be used as an excuse to pull government support from a thriving US solar sector, according to solar executives.

“A lot of people are saying a lot of things about solar,” said Arno Harris, CEO of San Francisco-based developer Recurrent Energy. “Most of it is wrong.”

About 30GW of solar capacity is in late-stage development in the US, and Recurrent alone has 2.4GW worth about $8 billion in investment in its pipeline, he said. About 100,000 people work in the US solar sector, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA).

“The important point is to look beyond the failure of one company,” Harris said.

The Solyndra bankruptcy has been interpreted by some as the failure of government to pick winners, as the company was backed by a $535 million loan guarantee from the Department of Energy. Prior to its bankruptcy filing on 6 September, Solyndra employed more than 1,100 full-time and temporary employees. It sold more than 500,000 solar panels since 2008, with cumulative sales of more than $250 million.

“Frankly, it’s disappointing when any plant closes and workers lose jobs,” said Tom Kimbis, SEIA’s director of policy and research and general counsel in Washington, DC. “The fact is that Solyndra had a highly innovative, high-efficiency product, but faced pressure from cheaper solar panels with prices that declined much faster than anyone in the industry expected.”

Solyndra caput once polysilicon prices dropped

Polysilicon prices were very high back in 2008, giving the company what appeared to be a competitive advantage because its technology did not use the material, he said. However, polysilicon production expanded rapidly to meet global demand for solar energy, causing spot prices to fall by nearly 90%. The company’s panels suddenly faced unanticipated pressure from much cheaper silicon panels and simply could not compete, Kimbis noted.

“Solyndra is really an exception rather than the rule,” he said. “The real solar story is quite compelling.”

Solyndra represented less than one fifth of 1% of the total number of solar panels produced, noted David Hochschild, vice-president, external relations for solar manufacturer Solaria in Fremont, California. But the Solyndra situation has affected other companies such as SolarCity, which was informed by the DOE that it could not finalise its loan guarantee prior to Friday’s deadline under the Section 1705 programme, he said. He called the project, which would install solar panels on military housing across the US, a “terrific idea” based on a mature technology that could be implemented at a lower cost.

Although some people are having “crazy, knee-jerk reactions”, polling and focus groups are showing that the public is not falling for arguments that the Solyndra bankruptcy is a sign that the US should pull back its support for clean energy, said Danny Kennedy, president of solar rooftop installer Sungevity Solar Home Specialists in Oakland, California.

“Nobody believes the solar industry is falling over because one solar company that did less than two-tenths of 1% went bankrupt,” he said.

By. Gloria Gonzalez

Source: Environmental-Finance




Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage

Trending Discussions


Leave a comment
  • Anonymous on October 06 2011 said:
    Thriving.....Yeah, businesses that have to have continuous government subsidies to keep from folding are generally considered to be "thriving". Tell us the success story of the Volt. Please, I can't get enough regressive spin in one day :D
  • Anonymous on October 07 2011 said:
    "The bankruptcy of solar panel manufacturer Solyndra should not be used as an excuse to pull government support from a thriving US solar sector, according to solar executives."If solar is thriving, why does the industry need government backed loans? Why not "thrive" on private capital investment? Could it be that private capital sees a ROI far too low and too far away?Solyndra picked the wrong technology, had a phony business model, and had already been vetted as a loser by the DOE, white house staffers and Price Waterhouse Coopers, but was still given the guarantee. That's the primary reason why taxpayers don't want government "investing" in private industry. It has proven many times it is very bad at picking winners.

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News