Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Renewable Energy Bankruptcies

Under bankruptcies in today's WSJ is Aventine Renewable Energy Holdings, Inc. with their major manufacturing facility and home office listed as 120 North Parkway Drive, Pekin, Il.

While this is not exactly NEW news, the reorganization plan up for voting approval is February,17. 2010.

My suggestion is that with all the political posturing of the current administration on how renewables are the way to go now, tread slowly unless you can convince the taxpayer to take the loss and the investors to take any gain. Be wary of where you put your money if you plan to buy stock. If you are forming a new company and know your way around Washington. D.C., you can get the Federal Government (taxpayers) to take most of the risk off your hands.

The landscape is littered with failed or failing renewable energy companies and sad investors; victims of political hype, bad management and a mis-read "ready" market for their product.

Noble ideas but, unlike the government, if they don't make money, even with all the subsidies they receive, they become another abandoned building on the landscape. This area has enough empty buildings right now to last for another 5-10 years and some, forever.

When oil was $150 a barrel, renewable investors thought oil would hold or go higher. Then it appeared that there was/is a lot more oil, clean coal or gas that is much cheaper than even a highly subsidized renewable.

Watch the $40 million pennycress company being organized in Mapletown and see where the funding is coming from. Bet it will be 90% funded by you know who. Fail or make it big, some insider people will make money on the project, one way or another.

Subsidies and entitlements will eventually be the total death of Capitalism in the U.S.A.


David P. Jordan said...


It's my understanding that ethanol is primarily supported by tax exemptions, rather than actual handouts. If true, then I'm less bothered by the former.

Cal Skinner said...

Blago signed a $1 billion tax break for ethanol in his first year, if memory serves me correctly.

Remember what Dirksen said about billions counting up.