A green energy company backed by billions in taxpayer funds is pouring money into its lobbying operation even as its parent company teeters on the edge of bankruptcy, government documents show.
Abengoa Solar LLC has spent $70,000 since October lobbying Congress for renewable energy subsidies, disclosure filings reveal. On each of the issues on which it lobbied, the company reported that its foreign parent, Spanish firm Abengoa, would benefit financially.
That company recently filed for insolvency protection in Spain, a process that gives it four months to secure financing that would allow it to stave off bankruptcy.
According to figures released by the company in those proceedings, its largest creditor, at about $2.35 billion (2.2 billion euros), is the U.S. Treasury. It also owes more than $280 million (260 million euros) to a controversial U.S. export finance agency recently reauthorized by Congress.
Abengoa is the company behind two U.S. solar facilities that together received $2.85 billion in stimulus-funded loan guarantees from the Department of Energy. Its extensive U.S. government backing led the group Good Jobs First to label Abengoa one of “Uncle Sam’s favorite corporations.”
Its federal financing came by way of the same loan guarantee program that backed the now-defunct solar company Solyndra, which could revive criticism of Obama administration subsidies for green energy companies that surfaced in the wake of its 2011 bankruptcy.