The Biden administration on Thursday announced its plans to invest more than $15 billion in grants and loans to support the auto industry’s transition to electric vehicles.
The package includes $10 billion in loans and $2 billion in grants to help manufacturers in converting their factories to produce electric vehicles, and to increase the production of batteries and battery materials. A further $3.5 billion will be invested in the production of advanced batteries, new battery technologies and grid storage.
The funding will accelerate the change to electric vehicles in the United States, in order to achieve their goal of increasing the percentage of new cars sold in the United States to 50% by 2030. The funding will be made available through the Energy Department’s Loan Program Office and the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) loan program.
Labour unions have greeted the initiative with enthusiasm, The United Auto Workers union stated that the investment would “create good-paying union jobs and help us win the race to make America the clean energy leader of the 21st century.” The reaction from automakers is likely to be less enthusiastic as they have argued that the transition to electric vehicles will be too expensive.
To qualify for financing, in addition to ATVM criteria, consideration will be given to the retention of existing workers, providing high wages and benefits and workplace rights, and commitments to keep facilities open until new facilities are complete.
The $2 billion grant program will support the manufacturing of light-, medium-, and heavy-duty electrified vehicles and their components. This will involve grants for domestic production of efficient hybrid, plug-in electric hybrid, plug-in electric, and hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicles.
The $12 billion funding is a significant investment and will have a positive effect towards a clean energy economy.
Read more on the investment here.
Dr Jacqueline Faridani
Dr Jacqueline Faridani heads up Prospect Law’s fast growing ESG practice. She is an advisor in financial risk management with 20 years of experience in a variety of risk management, compliance and product control roles at Canadian, German, French and Russian banks and life insurance companies, as well as for the Canadian financial regulator (OSFI).
Prospect Law is a multi-disciplinary practice with specialist expertise in the energy and environmental sectors with particular experience in the low carbon energy sector. The firm is made up of lawyers, engineers, surveyors and finance experts.
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