Here in South Carolina, manufacturing is a growing market, leading to more job opportunities and more sustainability for all. There are so many benefits when we bring manufacturing home. Let’s explore some of these right now by looking at a few recent examples right here in South Carolina.
Consider the case of Redwood Materials, which has announced its next Battery Materials Campus, just outside of Charleston, South Carolina, and will break ground this quarter. The plant will recycle, refine, and manufacture anode and cathode components on more than 600 acres.
Here’s the value for the local community. It will create more than 1,500 jobs and invest roughly $3.5 billion in the local community. Other benefits of localizing the production of critical battery components and ensuring these materials are recycled and driving down costs, emissions, and geopolitical risks. (I am being transparent; I have not toured one of its battery plants, yet.)
When these components are not produced in North America, they need to be sourced from more than 50,000 miles of global supply chain. The company expects battery manufacturers will spend more than $150 billion overseas on these components by 2030.
This plant here in South Carolina isn’t the first for this company. In fact, it has a new manufacturing corridor from Michigan to Georgia, which it coins the “battery belt.”
There are many advantages to adding this new facility in South Carolina, as the state has been home to the automotive industry for nearly three decades with more than 500 automotive companies and 72,000 autoworkers.
Under Governor McMaster’s leadership, South Carolina is committed to creating a secure energy future and a competitive landscape for EV (electric vehicle) manufacturing.
This is exactly the conversation I was having with Don Bent, chief operating officer, Oshkosh Defense, on the Project Sustainability Podcast. He shared how a new facility in South Carolina will produce the next-gen delivery vehicle for the U.S. postal service.
As a result of this, we will see a rise in new jobs here in this state. At the same time, we will also have to prepare to train new workers on such technology.
It is an exciting time to be living in South Carolina, as we see EV manufacturing make its home here. As many companies continue to bring manufacturing back to the states, the citizens will see changes in their local communities—many for the better. (Oh BTW, I was invited to tour a plant, and I will).
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