Sessions, Issa Press DOI To Stop Stonewalling, Provide Requested Info On Corporate Energy Loans
“It is suggestive and troubling that more than half a year has passed without DOI providing the requested documents and information. Our concern is heightened given the serious nature of the questions raised and the government’s pattern of indiscretion in providing government assistance to politically connected green energy companies such as Solyndra.”
WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, and U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa (R-CA), Chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, issued a joint statement today after sending a letter to Department of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar about the Department’s role in the Obama Administration’s green energy initiatives.
In their letter, Sessions and Issa note that more than six months have passed since Sessions first asked Salazar for detailed information about preferential treatment—including expedited permitting and approval—provided to certain favored energy corporations. To date, Interior has only provided a minimal amount of already publicly available information. Upon release of the letter, Sessions and Issa stated:
“Last November, a request was made of the Department of the Interior for information and answers about its role in the Department of Energy’s green energy loan guarantee program, as well as favorable loans and federal land-use deals provided to certain corporations. These lucrative deals were provided to well-connected firms on a much faster timeline and with fewer restrictions, including environmental, than those applied to traditional energy products that often provide a better value for taxpayers.
It is suggestive and troubling that more than half a year has passed without DOI providing the requested documents and information. Our concern is heightened given the serious nature of the questions raised and the government’s pattern of indiscretion in providing government assistance to politically connected green energy companies such as Solyndra.
The information currently accessible to the public raises the question of whether these companies received approval to use federal lands and taxpayer monies based not on the best value for the American people but the political clout of the recipients. Given the taxpayer dollars at risk, at a time of fiscal crisis, Interior’s failure to provide answers is unacceptable. These questions warrant an expeditious and thorough response, and we intend to ensure we receive one.”
Below, find the companies named in Sessions’ original request, sent in November of 2011:
- Abengoa Solar, Inc. (Mojave Solar)
- BrightSource Energy (Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System)
- First Solar, Inc. (Desert Sunlight Solar Farm)
- Nevada Geothermal Power, Inc. (Blue Mountain Geothermal Project)
- Ormat Nevada, Inc. (Jersey Valley Project)
- NextEra Energy Resources (Genesis Solar Project)
- SolarReserve, LLC (Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project)
To view the letter from Sessions and Issa, please click here.
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