Press Statement

Press Statement: New Research Report on Future of Auto Industry Underscores Federal Support is Key to a Worker- and Climate-Friendly Transition to Electric Vehicles

By March 23, 2022No Comments

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Virginia Alvino Young, 714-267-1623, virginia@sequalconsulting.com

 

NEW RESEARCH REPORT ON FUTURE OF AUTO INDUSTRY UNDERSCORES FEDERAL SUPPORT IS KEY TO A WORKER- AND CLIMATE-FRIENDLY TRANSITION TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES 

 

Appalachia New research released by the MIT Roosevelt Project this morning demonstrates that, with the right federal policies, 3,150,000 new jobs could be created in Michigan, Indiana, and Ohio, including 265,000 new manufacturing jobs over the next three decades. 

 

Today’s virtual press conference “Manufacturing Electric Vehicles: Heartland Case Study Report Release” presented the results of the Industrial Heartland Case Study, which conducted over 60 focus groups and dozens of interviews with autoworkers, management, community stakeholders, environmental justice advocates, and public health experts in the tristate area to evaluate past transitions and dislocations in the motor vehicle industry. 

 

The event included remarks from Senator Sherrod Brown, Ernie Moniz, Former U.S. Department of Energy Secretary, Mayor Tito Brown of Youngstown, OH, and Mayor Sharetta Smith of Lima, OH, on the importance of adapting regional manufacturing to electric vehicle technology. 

 

“With a strong, worker-friendly policy framework in response to the climate crisis, electrification of the motor vehicle sector could bring an exciting new era of shared prosperity to Industrial Heartland communities,” David Foster of the MIT Roosevelt Project. “But if policymakers don’t keep working people top of mind as they move the nation to zero emissions by 2050, the tri-state region of Ohio, Indiana, and Michigan could lose over 560,000 jobs, including 50,000 motor vehicle manufacturing jobs over the next three decades.” 

 

The research reveals key challenges and recommended best practices to promote equitable solutions to the anticipated dislocations caused by motor vehicle electrification and other clean energy transition initiatives in the region, as well as the importance of including environmental justice and equity in planning for the future. 

 

Following today’s press conference, lawmakers and researchers held an informational webinar to discuss the report findings and highlight the urgency of investing in electric vehicle manufacturing in the region. Speakers included: Former U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Ernie Moniz, Mayor Tito Brown of Youngstown, OH, Mayor Sharetta Smith of Lima, OH, Brett Smith of the Center for Automotive Research, David Foster of the MIT Roosevelt project, David Konisky of the Indiana University O’Neill School of Public and Environmental Affairs, CEO of Empowering A Green Environment and Economy, Dr. Jalonne L.White-Newsome, Amanda Woodrum of Policy Matters Ohio and ReImagine Appalachia, Christina Hajj of DTE Energy, and Keith Cooley, CEO of Principia LLC. 

“Ensuring that all communities will benefit from this transition and transformation of the automotive sector is critical,” said Dr. Jalonne White-Newsome, CEO of Empowering A Green Environment and Economy.  “Those benefits – especially for low-income communities and communities of color – must include addressing legacy environmental pollution, prioritizing resources to reduce health disparities in communities that have been breathing dirty air for decades, and ensure that these communities are able to not only afford cleaner vehicles, but public transportation is electrified as well.  We have an opportunity here. Environmental Justice and Equity must be at the forefront of all of our decision making”

Said Amanda Woodrum of Policy Matters Ohio, “We have an opportunity to transform our region into a 21st century economy that works for all Appalachians, with electric vehicles playing a critical role. We must see ambitious action from Congress and the Biden administration that uses these learnings to build and implement policy that benefits the workers and communities most at risk.” 

Key among the policies under consideration in Washington, D.C. include electric vehicle (EV) tax credits, domestic content and union assembly requirements for those subsidies, EV infrastructure investments, and re-enactment and expansion of the 48C Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit. 

 

A recording of today’s press conference and webinar can be accessed here

 

The study is available at this link.

 

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