Daily Sprout

Ausra Scales Back Solar Plans: Solar startup Ausra has abandoned plans to build massive solar-thermal power plants in favor of smaller, cheaper units because of a lack of financing. — CNET’s Green Tech

More Money, More Problems?: Congress plans to put $10 billion or more in economic stimulus funding into a DOE loan guarantee program that hasn’t backed any projects since it began in 2005. A DOE spokesperson said the program will move more quickly now that it has motivated administrators. — Bloomberg

Obama’s No Jimmy Carter: The new president keeps the Oval Office toasty enough to wear shirtsleeves, opting not to demonstrate energy conservation on the job. — NYT’s Green Inc.

High-Speed Rail Hops on the Fast Track: After languishing for years at the margins of federal policy, passenger rail projects are picking up speed as President Barack Obama joins states in calling for investment in rail infrastructure. — Wired’s Autopia

CIGS on the Rise: Research firm NanoMarkets projects CIGS-based thin film photovoltaics sales will reach $2.1 billion in 2016, up from $402.1 million expected in 2011. — PV Tech