In October this year, President Biden launched the so-called American Battery Materials Initiative, which aims to make the United States the global leader in EV manufacturing. As part of this initiative, the Department of Energy (DOE), through its Loan Programs Office (LPO), today announces a $2.5 billion loan to Ultium Cells LLC, a joint venture between General Motors and LG Energy Solution that will produce battery cells. Thanks to the new loan, the company will open three new factories in the country creating more than 11,000 jobs.
The financing will go directly into the construction of the three new lithium-ion battery cell manufacturing plants in Ohio and Michigan. The DOE estimates that a total of 6,000 new workers will be needed for the construction processes alone and another 5,100 for the plants' operations with all more than 11,000 positions to be “good-paying jobs.” The loan supports the President’s long-term goals to have electric vehicles make up at least half of all new vehicle sales by the end of the decade.
Gallery: Ultium Cells LLC Battery Plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee
“DOE is flooring the accelerator to build the electric vehicle supply chain here at home – and that starts with domestic battery manufacturing led by American workers and the unions that support them,” US Secretary of Energy, Jennifer M. Granholm, comments. “This loan will jumpstart the domestic battery cell production needed to reduce our reliance on other countries to meet increased demand and support President Biden’s goals of widespread EV adoption and cutting carbon pollution produced by gas-powered vehicles.”
Ultium Cells LLC’s goal is to begin producing lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles on a large scale and support GM’s plan to become offer only emissions-free vehicles in the United States starting in 2035. By the end of the next decade, the American automaker wants to become completely carbon-neutral in all its operations.
Just recently, General Motors, through its GM Defense military products division, was tasked by the Defense Innovation Unit (DIU) to develop a battery prototype platform for testing and analysis by the Department of Defense. This platform will be based on GM’s Ultium architecture, which is one of the most advanced available in the automotive industry and its EV sector. Prior to this move, the US Army tasked GM Defense to supply the military with a GMC Hummer EV back in July of this year.