CA-Based Solyndra Files for Bankruptcy

Source:  Climate Change Business Journal, September 2, 2011.   Solyndra (Fremont, CA), a manufacturer of cylindrical solar photovoltaic panels, has shut down, laid off 1,100 full- and part-time employees, and will file for bankruptcy.  Solyndra said in an announcement on September 1 that global economic and solar-industry market conditions led to its action.  The company will evaluate options including the possible sale or licensing of its business, technology, and/or manufacturing expertise.  The Department of Energy noted that Solyndra was “once very promising company that increased its sales revenue by 2,000% in three years and sold more than 1,000 installations in 20 countries.”

Solyndra was the recipient of a 2009 $535 million federal Department of Energy loan guarantee–the first under the Obama administration. There is concern that the Solyndra announcement could damage both the Obama administration and federal support for renewable energy.  The Center for Public Integrity’s iWatch News and ABC reported that Solyndra was one of the companies that may have received improper preferential treatment from the DOE.