Back in July, President Obama said, “when I try something that doesn’t work, then I don’t try it again”

Yet the President continues to funnel taxpayer money to green energy companies that seem to fail month after month.

The Heritage Foundation’s Elinor Renner and Rachael Slobodien compiled a list of 19 green energy companies that received a total of $2.6 billion of taxpayer money–and failed anyway:

1. Abound Solar, Government’s Bad Bet: $ 790.3 million

2. Solyndra, Government’s Bad Bet: $570 million

3. A123 Systems, Government’s Bad Bet: $377.1 million

4. Ener1 (EnerDel, subsidiary), Government’s Bad Bet: $182.8 million

5. Range Fuels, Government’s Bad Bet: $162.3 million

6. Azure Dynamics, Government’s Bad Bet: $119.1 million

7. Energy Conversion Devices (subsidiary, United Solar Ovanic), Government’s Bad Bet: $110.3 million

8. Evergreen Solar, Inc., Government’s Bad Bet: $84.9 million

9. Beacon Power, Government’s Bad Bet: $77.4 million

10. Raser Technologies, Government’s Bad Bet: $33 million

11. Nordic Windpower, Government’s Bad Bet: $24.6 million

12. SpectraWatt, Government’s Bad Bet: $20.5 million

13. Konarka Technologies, Government’s Bad Bet: $13.6 million

14. Satcon Technology Corporation, Government’s Bad Bet: $17 million

15. Olsen’s Crop Service and Olsen’s Mills Acquisition Co., Government’s Bad Bet: $10.8 million

16. Stirling Energy Systems, Inc., Government’s Bad Bet: $10.5 million

17. Thompson River Power, LLC, Government’s Bad Bet: $6.5 million

18. Cardinal Fasteners and Specialty Co., Inc., Government’s Bad Bet: $480,000

19. Mountain Plaza, Inc. , Government’s Bad Bet: $424,000

The problem is that the federal government is trying to pick economic winners and losers. That means the government is taking over the role of private sector venture capitalists, who decide if a risky investment is worth the potential benefits. But when the government plays venture capitalist, it tends to favor well-connected firms, which is cronyism. And unlike private investors, who are risking their own money, the government is taking risks with your money.

As Heritage’s Nicolas Loris explains:

 Policymakers need to end their obsession for energy subsidies, or we’re going to continue following the same failed path of wasteful spending. There is no need to reform the energy subsidy programs; we need to completely abolish it.

The United States should rely on market forces and the private sector to provide Americans with affordable energy rather than mandates, regulations and subsidies ordered by government. Policymakers should focus on allowing new supplies to come to market, reducing enormous regulations and eliminating energy subsidies.

Do you think the government should fund green energy projects?

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