Thursday, February 25, 2021

Electric vehicle assembly at Foxconn WI site?

Updated: I'm not ready to jump up and down over the possibility that a California-based startup may take over a  building at the assembly line-free Foxconn site in Mt. Pleasant and build electric cars there.

Let me rephrase that. The possibility is fine. 

Just show me some results.

I've been following the Foxconn fiasco for nearly four years - a link to that complete archive is here.

Keep in mind that while Tesla and other corporations are putting more drivers in EVs every day, and the US Postal Service just contracted with Oshkosh Defense to build a new fleet of mail delivery EVs that echo Amazon's ambitious EV commitment, too - startups on this scale face big challenges that are often too big to overcome.

Especially if there are already big companies like GM and governments the size of China already in the mix.

Do you remember when Walker threw - and threw away - big state money at a airplane startup that was supposed to energize his failed job-creating promises and also jump start the City of Superior's economy?

I'm also not yet celebrating because we've been teased before about what Foxconn might built in Mt. Pleasant - ventilators for COVID19 patients or airport coffee dispensing machines - after the original complex which state and local governments have subsidized shrank to one-twentieth its promised size.

And which never produced large flat panel screens for electronic devices.

That were never delivered along so-called smart, driverless trucking lanes to Milwaukee's Mitchell International Airport as part of an incomplete, publicly-funded 'scale up' linked to anticipated Foxconn activity.

It would welcome news if something other than fill dirt from bulldozed farm land and scrap from demolished homes actually came off the site.

Especially if some actual green jobs were created which were also were good for the environment that has already sacrificed wetlands and widened roadway right-of-ways. 

Don't get me wrong. I'm all for EVs, will definitely buy one if I were ever to buy another vehicle.

I just don't want to get suck into another Foxconn promise that disappears.

Update - And an hour after I posted this, I see that only 10% of the EVs to be delivered to the Postal Service will be EVs, so another disappointment and a warning that for every step forward in this area, there are more steps back.

Though how ironic would it be if the project created the very type of energy-efficient vehicles which the previous Republican administration had discouraged with a $75 annual registration upcharge - a move that dovetailed with Walker's long and wider attack on renewable energy that undercut solar power development and delayed wind farms.

Wisconsin wind farm, east of Waupun
A wind turbine east of Waupun, Wisconsin - though developed by an out-of-state firm.

Much of that history is here:

Walker's hostility to alternative energy and other benefits to the environment are catalogued  by the dozens, here, and in a recently-concludes blog series, here - - despite his propagandizing 'our legacy.'

1 comment:

Allen Bishop said...

Foxconn should put a sweet corn stand. Jerry Smith charges 7 bucks a dozen and needs the competition.