A new report released by the U.S. DOE, outlines the positive economic impact of ongoing advanced vehicle investments made through the Recovery Act.
Intentionally (and well-timed) released the day before President Obama attended the groundbreaking ceremony for a Compact Power plant in Holland, MI, the report, titled Transforming America's Transportation Sector [pdf], paints a pretty picture of how Recovery Act Funding, mixed with private capital, is creating jobs and helping build the electric vehicle industry from the ground up.
For every dollar of the US$2.4 billion in seed money the government provided through the Recovery Act advanced battery and electric vehicle grants, the companies have matched it at minimum dollar for dollar.
Pre-Recovery Act, the U.S. produced just 2 percent of the world's batteries for advanced vehicles, but due to Recovery Act investments, the U.S. will have the capacity to produce 20 percent of these batteries by 2012 and up to 40 percent by 2015 - that's a jump from 2 percent to 40 percent in a span of just five years.
Nine of the nine new battery plants opening as a result of Recovery Act investments will have started construction by the end of the week - and four of those will be operational by the end of the year. In addition, twenty-one other plants will make battery or electric vehicle components with the help of Recovery Act grants.
Before the Recovery Act, high battery costs meant a car with a 100 mile range would need a battery that cost $33,000. But because of the higher-volume domestic manufacturing the Recovery Act is spurring, the cost of such a battery could come down to $16,000 by the end of 2013 and $10,000 by the end of 2015, dramatically driving down the cost of an electric vehicle and greatly expanding the domestic market.
Before the Recovery Act, there were less than 500 electric vehicle charging locations in the U.S., but as a result of Recovery Act investments, there will be over 20,000 by 2012.
Undoubtedly, the question remains whether or not the good results are enough to answer for all the funding that has been produced over the years.
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