President Barack Obama touted a plan to step up green energy subsidies on Friday at an Energy Department laboratory that critics say is emblematic of the government's failure to succeed with taxpayer-funded green energy projects.
The University of Chicago-based lab where Obama spoke has partnered with a company to develop batteries for electric vehicles. However, the stimulus-funded manufacturing facility that was supposed to produce the batteries-themselves the product of stimulus subsidies for research and development-has yet to furnish a single one.
The president's green energy proposal calls for using revenues from oil and gas lease sales to fund an additional $2 billion in subsidies for green energy projects.
Obama outlined the plan in more detail at a speech Friday afternoon at DOE's Argonne National Laboratory at the University of Chicago, which received more than $200 million in stimulus subsidies and contracts for electric vehicle research, among other projects.
Argonne worked with the company LG Chem Michigan in 2011 to produce electric vehicle batteries. The lab provided its patented design for those batteries to the company, which was supposed to manufacture them at its Holland, Mich., plant.