In a speech delivered Wednesday morning in Lansing, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) touted her perception of her administration’s achievements thus far while revealing the agenda for the remainder of her second – and final – term in office.
The governor’s speech – titled “What’s Next?” – began with Whitmer touting her administration’s efforts to “bring critical supply chains home” from China. However, the efforts she listed are projects heavily affiliated with Chinese-owned companies, including the future CCP Gotion electric-vehicle battery production plant in Big Rapids and Ford’s Blue Oval battery plant in Marshall, which will license lithium iron phosphate technology from Chinese company CATL.
“In Big Rapids, we’re creating over 2,300 jobs, in Marshall 2,500,” she said, adding, “These new battery plants will be game changers, supporting thousands of families, uplifting local businesses, and ensuring that our cities and towns thrive for decades to come. They’ll help Michigan go toe-to-toe with China, bringing critical parts of the auto supply chain home,” she said.
“We must reduce our reliance on Chinese products, which have caused work stoppages, shortages, and car price hikes over the last few years,” the governor added.
As reported previously by The Midwesterner, CCP Gotion is an entirely Chinese-owned company. Earlier this month CCP Gotion’s Foreign Agent Registration Act filing revealed: “Gotion, Inc. is wholly owned and controlled by by (sic) Hefei Gotion High-Tech Power Energy Co., Ltd.”
As exclusively reported by The Midwesterner, Gotion High-Tech’s articles of association require the company to be affiliated with the CCP.
U.S. Department of Energy June 2022 statistics reveal Michigan residents registered slightly under 17,500 battery-powered vehicles. By comparison, the state had 8.5 million internal combustion engine vehicles registered in 2020.
Consumer reluctance to purchase EVs is driven by range anxiety and vehicle sticker prices. Ford, for example, reported its EVs lost more than $2 billion for the company in 2022. The company, however, earned $10 billion from fleet sales and sales of ICE vehicles.
Other concerns stymieing the adoption of EVs includes the environmental damage wrought by mining the precious metals necessary to build EV batteries. Additionally, concerns persist that mining is performed by slave labor.
Despite the failure of EVs to launch statewide, the Whitmer administration has pledged billions of taxpayer dollars to assist the industry through a series of grants from federal funds as well as grants from the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and long-term local property tax abatements.
According to Whitmer, what’s next for Michigan is enacting a 100% clean energy standard.
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“If we’re serious about making Michigan the place to raise a family, we need to be deliberate in our goals to reduce energy costs, improve energy reliability, and make our energy systems sustainable,” Sen. Sue Shink, D-Northfield Twp., said in a statement issued by Whitmer’s office. “Our goal is a 100% clean energy standard that will make our homes more comfortable, our grid more sustainable, and utilities more reliable. Many of my colleagues and I are serious about doing this work, I’m glad to know Governor Whitmer is too. We’re all pulling in the same direction to get this done for our State and everyone who calls it home.”