President Barack Obama certainly isn't setting modest goals when it
comes to electric vehicles. The President is taking a
over $2.4B USD into the budding industry. A 100-mile
range battery EV today costs around $33,000 USD to make, but Obama
hopes to drop that cost to $16,000 by 2013 and $10,000 by
2015.President Obama was visiting
Michigan this week to check in on many pending battery
projects that are receiving a piece of that $2.4B USD pie.Among
the events he attended was the groundbreaking ceremony in Holland,
Michigan of a Compact
Power Inc. plant that will be used to provide batteries for
the Chevy Volt. Compact Power, owned by South Korea's LG,
announced news more big news at the ceremony -- Ford picked it to
produce batteries for the plug-in Ford Focus. The
plant will cost $303M USD to build, but the government will be
chipping in $151M USD. The plant is expected to employ 450
workers by 2013 according to the Obama administration. The jobs
are expected to pay $14, providing a decent standard of living to
workers.Obama also checked out Johnson Controls-Saft's new
$220M lithium-ion battery plant, also in Holland, Michigan.
That plant may prove to be a key competitor to Compact Power in the
near future, and is also receiving federal stimulus funding.On
Friday, Energy Secretary Steven Chu will visit Delphi Automotive
in Kokomo, Indiana. Delphi is one of the auto industry's
top suppliers. The U.S. government is offering it $89M USD in
grants to develop new components for electric
vehicles.Meanwhile, Ed Montgomery, executive director of
the White House Council on Automotive Communities and Workers, will
be visiting General Motor's new plant in in White Marsh, Maryland.
While GM will buy battery cells from suppliers like Compact Power, it
its own battery packs and supporting systems in house at
this new plant. GM is receiving $241M USD in federal funding
for its EV efforts in total, including $106M USD towards this new
plant.Charlotte, North Carolina-based Celgard will be
receiving a visit from Labor Secretary Hilda Solis. Celgard
will receive $49M USD in stimulus money, which will allow it hire 100
employees, open a plant, and reach production.While grants to
promote the actual manufacturing of electric vehicles and their
battery systems are one key aspect of Obama's efforts, another major
component is the creation
of electrical vehicle charging stations. By spreading EV
chargers out like gas stations, the range of EVs can effectively be
extended.Companies like Coulomb Technologies will be
deploying the stations across the country later this year and next
year. New York-based Coulomb is receiving a $15M USD stimulus
grant to spread 4,600 such stations in nine cities by September
2011. That's a big chunk of the 20,000 station Obama hopes to
deploy by 2012 (there are currently 500 such stations in the
U.S.).The goals are lofty -- Obama is shooting for over
20,000 electric vehicle stations, 1 million EVs on the road, and
bargain EV prices of $10,000 per vehicle by 2015. In short,
he's trying to completely reinvent the American auto industry, much
of which essentially
collapsed during the recent recession.
quote: reducing 70% of the electric car price in 5 years? impossible I say!
quote: In short, he's trying to completely reinvent the American auto industry
quote: We need to get off oil at all costs.
quote: Yes, a good idea to get us by for a while while other entergy sources get researched, prefected, and cheeapened, but it wont last forever.
quote: Actually there is really no SOLID proof that oil wont last forever.
quote: Pretty shaky foundation to base energy planning on though. 'Theres no problem, the oil will replenish itself!
quote: I do thank him, though, for shaking the American public back to their senses. Looking forward to an amazing November election cycle.
quote: Really? At all costs?
quote: It takes multi-billion dollar handouts?
quote: Since when was it the job of the President to "reinvent" industries?
quote: Since when was it the job of the President to "reinvent" industries? And who decides which ones get reinvented? Obama and a Car Czar? That's not how things are supposed to work here Jason.
quote: Why is it that wars are good for the economy, but stimulus spending isn't?
quote: I didn't mean that you took the position that wars stimulate the economy
quote: I would also think that infrastructure spending would be just as good - or even better, as that infrastructure ought to make future commerce more efficient.
quote: But yes, the devil is in the details. $1T stimulus doesn't mean $1T infrastructure spending. It's whatever they actually choose to fund, and it is so very open to corruption as to be disgusting.
quote: The plant will cost $303M USD to build, but the government will be chipping in $151M USD. The plant is expected to employ 450 workers by 2013 according to the Obama administration. The jobs are expected to pay $14, providing a decent standard of living to workers.
quote: By spreading EV chargers out like gas stations, the range of EVs can effectively be extended.
quote: There is no way that the energy efficiency savings from using an EV can ever make up for the costs of infrastructure like that
quote: Really too bad that no one can design replaceable battery packs that can be quickly changed out
quote: Where I live in California, $30k/year will get you house under a freeway overpass.
quote: Slate: New poll numbers devastating for Obama
quote: Economists may say, yes, the economy is recovering (maybe), but the country says no. Only 25 percent say the economy is improving, according to a recent CBS survey. That's just one of the dark findings for the administration in a slew of recent polls that suggest that the administration's summer tour will do little to improve the president's political fortunes and those of his party.
quote: Three polls that came out in the last two days offer discouraging news for the White House. In the Washington Post/ABC News poll, public confidence in the president has hit a new low. Six in 10 voters say they lack faith in the president. In a CBS News poll, 54 percent of the country disapprove of his handling of the economy, the highest number to date. In a Pew Research Center/National Journal poll, the number of Americans who approve of the president's health care legislation, the signature achievement of his presidency so far, sits at an anemic 35 percent.
quote: Candidate Obama used to joke about rays of sunshine coming in when he started to speak. Now he brings the clouds. He's spent a great deal of time talking about the Recovery Act and health care reform, but the political fortunes of those programs are dismal, which suggests his ability to persuade and change minds is seriously damaged.
quote: A 100-mile range battery EV today costs around $33,000 USD to make, but Obama hopes to drop that cost to $16,000 by 2013 and $10,000 by 2015.