Amid GOP attacks, good news for Obama's green-energy program

Ener1, whose subsidiary EnerDel received a $118.5 million stimulus grant from the Energy Department in 2009, said last week that a federal bankruptcy court has approved a plan to restructure the company’s debt. The company filed for bankruptcy in January.

The move paves the way for Ener1 to “exit bankruptcy with a stronger financial position and a renewed focus on executing its long-term business strategy,” the company, which develops lithium-ion batteries used in electric vehicles, said in a statement.

As part of the agreement, $86 million of new equity funding will be infused in the company, a move that will ensure that EnerDel and its other subsidies continue operating, the company said.

When Ener1 filed for bankruptcy in January, the company stressed that EnerDel would likely not be affected.

Meanwhile, a private-equity firm is expected to soon close a deal to ensure that the Energy Department recovers more than 70 percent of a taxpayer-backed loan to an energy storage company that filed for bankruptcy last year.

Rockland Capital hopes to finalize a deal early this week to acquire Beacon Power Corp.'s Stephentown, N.Y., energy storage plant, according to The Washington Post, after the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission greenlighted the plan.

The Obama administration gave Beacon a $43 million loan in 2010 to help build the plant. But Beacon filed for bankruptcy last year.

“Rockland Capital's purchase of Beacon Power and its Stephentown subsidiary means that the Department stands to recover more than 70 percent of our investment, and reaffirms that this is a valuable project with important technology,” Energy Department spokesman Damien LaVera said in a statement.

“Rockland's commitment to this project highlights the need to continue to make investments in innovative, commercially viable projects that can help America compete for the clean energy jobs of tomorrow.”