Southern Auto Corridor Takes Down Detroit

Electric vehicle projects in the South are everywhere!

By By Michael Randle

President Joe Biden’s chief economic advisor met with Nashville community leaders last quarter to tout federal investments in electric-vehicle and battery manufacturing and technology.

Cecilia Rouse, chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, said the combined impact of Biden economic initiatives since 2021 spurred $15 billion in private investment across Tennessee. “Tennessee’s a great example of the president’s economic plan in action — attract private investment and create regional industrial hubs, including in Tennessee, for high-wage, high growth industries of the future,” Rouse said. “In 2021, Tennessee’s overall economy grew 9 percent in real terms — the fastest rate in four decades. In the first three quarters of 2022, Tennessee’s GDP grew more than 2 percentage points faster than that of the US economy as a whole.” – The Tennessean

But it is not just Tennessee that has seen monumental gains from the next generation electric vehicle industry. Almost every state in the South — specifically its rural regions — has seen the same gains (some more than others) since the end of 2020. In fact, our tally of electric vehicle and EV-related projects total more than $286 billion (that’s with a “B”) since January 1, 2021.

Let’s take a broad look at what this new industry has created in jobs and where in the South to date they have been announced. Of course, these are announcements and about 38 percent of the projects have actually begun hiring as of the spring quarter of 2023. Several, including both Ford EV projects in Kentucky and Tennessee, are well under construction, including some suppliers to those two massive facilities.

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