Where's the $25 Billion for Efficient Cars?

Greenie As President Barack Obama tries to ease the domestic auto crisis, a government-backed plan to help develop a greener U.S. auto industry has failed to launch, the New York Times reports.

A $25 billion loan program run by the Department of Energy was established in 2007 to accelerate a green car revolution. Specifically, the loans were supposed to give automakers the retooling money they would need to build vehicles that get 25% better mileage.

Yet, today, none of the money has been doled out. According to the Times, the reasons include a poorly staffed team of 12 people sifting through 75 applications (some of which are more than 1,000 pages long) and a vague validation process.

Companies asking for money include General Motors and Chrysler, who have asked for $13 billion in retooling money for projects like the Chevy Volt and Cruze and the Dodge Circuit. Ford wants $5 billion for its plug-in hybrid program and an electric car and van. Even Nissan is trying to get in on the action, though DOE rules are skewed toward helping the Big Three.

Startups also want a share, the most famous being Tesla Motors, which wants $350 million to build a new factory in northern California for a new sedan. A123 Systems — one of America’s few battery producers — wants $1.8 billion to build a next-generation battery plant in Detroit.

As credit remains scarce and climate concerns increase, there is added impetus to get these projects under way.

Energy Secretary Steven Chu said he hopes to jump-start the loan process, making the first payments available by April or May. So far, the 75 applications have been trimmed down to 25 well-qualified firms, but there’s no word on which companies those might be. The $787 billion stimulus package gives Chu another $2 billion to play with.

$25 Billion to Promote Electric Cars Is Untouched (NYT)

Comments 

Ellue Dezell

That is not the real story.. the real story is that the Bush Administration set out to kill Tesla because previous Washington DC was owned and controlled by big oil who also owns Detroit. Tesla turned in all of its paperwork for the multiple DOE loans, WHICH HAD BEEN CREATED UINDER LAW AS EMERGENCY FUNDING TO BE DELIVERED IN 2008 AND NO LATER! And DOE buried the funding and delayed it until Tesla was financially ruined. It should have taken 3 people, 4 days to look over Tesla’s application. They have INTENTIONALLY DELAYED the DOE 136 Money and Loan Guarantee money for FIVE MONTHS in order to kill Tesla. They had the paperwork for almost half a year yet the only looked at it A FEW DAYS AGO because they were ordered to by the NEW White House according to a top former Tesla Exec. There should be a corruption investigation that ties big oil to certain Bush Executives, some of whom are STILL THERE!

Dave Tommas

""Braaaaaaaak, blame Bush!, blame Bush!, "braaaaaaak, blame Bush!, blame Bush!"

Just like a parrot.

Edward

Time to face the music. Even though many of us voted for BHO as it turns out he's just another lying politician. I hope you enjoy the taste of pork as you're paying for it and then some.

1st Time Poster

Edward & Dave Tommas:

Did you even read the article or are you just cruising random boards and seeding the same negative comments everywhere?

Have fun, boys.

Ben

There could be no better investment in America than to invest in America becoming energy independent! We need to utilize everything in out power to reduce our dependence on foreign oil including using our own natural resources.Create cheap clean energy, new badly needed green jobs and reduce our dependence on foreign oil.The high cost of fuel this past year seriously damaged our economy and society. The cost of fuel effects every facet of consumer goods from production to shipping costs. After a brief reprieve gas is inching back up.OPEC will continue to cut production until they achieve their desired 80-100. per barrel.If all gasoline cars, trucks, and SUV's instead had plug-in electric drive trainsthe amount of electricity needed to replace gasoline is about equal to the estimated wind energy potential of the state of North Dakota.There is a really good new book out by Jeff Wilson called The Manhattan Project of 2009 Energy Independence Now.

Adam C.

I'm with Edward on this one as we've been duped! It just goes to show you what lack of experience and leadership can do. And to think I voted for this bum!

UK Diesel Driver

(/sarcasm on) I would be annoyed to if I voted Obama. He has been in power for over a week now and he has still not solved the economic crisis, won the war on terror, solved the whole Israel vs. Palestina thing and created world peace whilst establishing democracy in China, North Korea and Iran. He is so incompetent... (/sarcasm off...)

Newsflash about Obama:
1- He is not God
2- He does not possess a magic wand

He is however a lot more sensible and competent then the guy you had before and the best man for the job based on the options you were given. So stop moning and give the guy a break.

He did not hand out loans/mortgages to people that could not afford to pay them back. He did not put a gun to your head to force you into buying yet another item on credit.

Recessions do not stop until consumers become more confident and have disposable income to spend on goods. Until this tipping point arrives it is goint to get worse, no one can chance that (no, he can't today either...).

Emergency loans might drag out this mess and make it a more prolonged, messy affair compared to a short and sharp pain. Remember that greed and spending got the whole world into this mess...

Oh, I apologise for making semi-political comments on this car website. I promise I will not be making them again.

the one

this story has nothing to do with obama, the program started in 07 bush years. and besides obama been president for less than 2 months

Ben5

Our President failed to deliver as he could have provided $5 or $10 thousand dollar rebates on ALL hybrid vehicles. Unfortunately he's not serious he's just another talking head politician. I travel internationally for my job and spend quite a bit of time in France. The French really like Obama but also view him as being incredibly naive when it comes to the environment since he excludes nuclear power. Thanks to Obama your average electric bill is going to increase 2 to 3 fold over the next 20 months. Check with your local Public Utility Commission and you'll see how every utility retailer has rate case increases underway.

Belly

Thanks to Obama your average electric bill is going to increase 2 to 3 fold over the next 20 months. Check with your local Public Utility Commission and you'll see how every utility retailer has rate case increases underway.

If they've been underway than why is it not because of the Bush administration? Obama has so little to work with yet you want to blame him for events that were set in motion years ago. If Bush were in office you're bill would increase 2 to 3 fold and then you would get a 75% surcharge because the government would pass a law allowing it to happen.

I'm with Edward too on this one as we've been duped!

Its sort of bizarre how the commeters here are ignorant of how a bill becomes law.

Let Schoolhouse Rock educate you:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mEJL2Uuv-oQ

Then you'll hopefully realize that calling our president a liar is absurd.

sheth

"I'm with Edward on this one as we've been duped! It just goes to show you what lack of experience and leadership can do. And to think I voted for this bum!"

Can you explain your logic? What in the above articles indicates that Obama is a liar and a bum. I am confused. This is a carry over issue from the last administration and I dont see where Obama has lied or tried to fool anyone here. What exactly are you talking about?

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