Monday, October 24, 2011 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
(NaturalNews) The federal government is having a good time freely dispensing billions of taxpayer dollars to green energy companies, despite the fact that it appears to have no solid game plan for determining which initiatives are viable, and which ones will go the way of Solyndra.
And now ABC News reports that the US Department of Energy's (DOE) $529 million loan to Fisker Automotive, a high-end electric hybrid automobile startup company, has been used to establish a manufacturing plant in Finland rather than in the US.
Henrik Fisker claims his company could not find a suitable manufacturing facility in the US to build its cars, and instead had no choice but to contract an overseas facility through the Finnish firm Valmet Automotive. He also claims that none of the US-based loan money is being used to pay workers at the Finnish plant, and that the company is utilizing American designers and engineers to innovate the vehicles.
But verifying whether or not the venture is advancing in the way Fisker claims is difficult, as a Government Accountability Office (GAO) audit conducted earlier this year found that DOE is ill-equipped to properly manage the loans it is distributing. And a situation like what occurred with Solyndra, the failed California-based solar energy technology company, could eventually occur with a company like Fisker as well, which will leave American taxpayers to foot the bill (http://www.naturalnews.com/033606_S...).
"DOE cannot be assured that the projects are on track to deliver the vehicles as agreed," says the GAO report concerning Fisker. "It also means that US taxpayers do not know whether they are getting what they paid for through the loans."
Fisker is already more than a year behind schedule with releasing its $97,000 luxury hybrid, according to ABC News. And its plan to use federal loan money to mass produce a $57,400 Model S sedan is also questionable, as the company allegedly has no experience in implementing this type of large-scale production capacity, and has yet to even release a simple picture or concept drawing of the supposed vehicle.
Fisker did purchase a former General Motors manufacturing facility in Wilmington, Del., where Vice President Joe Biden emphatically proclaimed several years ago would eventually be home to a domestic Fisker manufacturing plant. But to this day, there are still no Fisker vehicles being produced there, and the only progress that has been made so far has been overseas.
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