Advocacy group urges Obama to include auto suppliers in energy proposal

By Dustin Walsh
CRAIN’S DETROIT BUSINESS

Published: March 27, 2013 2:34 pm ET
Updated: March 27, 2013 2:36 pm ET

Related to this story

Topics Automotive, Sustainability, Government & Legislation

DETROIT — President Barack Obama wants to steer offshore oil drilling revenue to green research — and the automotive industry wants in.

The Motor & Equipment Manufacturers Association, the Washington D.C.-based advocacy group used by the auto industry, sent a letter to the White House Monday urging the inclusion of suppliers in the proposal.

President Obama unveiled the "Blueprint for a Clean Secure Energy Future" proposal last week. The proposal would establish the Energy Security Trust to set aside $2 billion over 10 years from royalty revenues generated by oil and gas development in federal waters on the Outer Continental Shelf.

The funds are earmarked to support research into such initiatives as electric vehicles, biofuels, fuel cells and domestically produced natural gas.

The supply base accounts for 30 percent of the $18 billion research and development investment in automotive, according to MEMA. Also, 70 percent of intellectual capital and deployment of technologies comes from the supply base, the organization noted in the letter.

"This is an opportunity to take advantage of the momentum of change that is now occurring in our industry sector and to learn from the lessons of the past," MEMA President Robert McKenna said in the letter.

However, the proposal is reported to face opposition from Republicans who want to expand drilling to other areas, such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska.

President Obama will also likely face opposition due to snafus in the U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing loan program. The $25 billion program awarded money to Ford Motor Co., Nissan Motor Co. Ltd. and others, including a $528.7 million loan to Fisker Automotive Inc. and a $249 million grant to A123 Systems LLC.

A123, which has plants in Livonia and Romulus, filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy in October, then was acquired by Chinese supplier Wanxiang Group in an auction.

Fisker's founder Henrik Fisker left the electric carmaker he founded earlier this month after the struggling company was unable to close on a deal to sell to Chinese-owned automaker Zhejiang Geely Holding Group.

MEMA was also upset over the ATVM program (Section 136 of the Energy and Security Act of 2007), claiming the DOE didn't include enough suppliers and that the current plan doesn't specify the involvement of suppliers.

"Our history with 136 would indicate that it is easy to neglect suppliers in the process," Ann Wilson, senior vice president of MEMA, said in an email. "Over 100 suppliers applied for the program and none received funding because of a narrow interpretation by DOE."


Comments

Advocacy group urges Obama to include auto suppliers in energy proposal

By Dustin Walsh
CRAIN’S DETROIT BUSINESS

Published: March 27, 2013 2:34 pm ET
Updated: March 27, 2013 2:36 pm ET

Post Your Comments


Back to story


More stories

Image

Non-recyclable items gumming up the works at recycling centers

August 21, 2014 3:46 pm ET

The influx of all sorts of unacceptable items at recycling centers has gotten to the point that Charlotte, N.C.-based ReCommunity is trying to bring...    More

Image

Bayer, SCAC partner on water reuse project

August 21, 2014 12:48 pm ET

Bayer MaterialScience (BMS) and Shanghai Chlor-Alkali Chemical Co. Ltd. (SCAC) have entered into a preliminary agreement for the reuse of waste water ...    More

Image

Automakers look under the hood for the next lightweighting opportunities

August 20, 2014 1:06 pm ET

The automotive industry's current favorite target for lightweighting efforts is the powertrain, according to a recent survey.    More

Image

GameDay Challenge expands the competition to the recycling bin

August 20, 2014 10:23 am ET

GameDay Recycling Challenge is returning this year as college football stadiums will compete to see which school produces the least amount of waste...    More

Image

Cooper-Standard JV to focus on Asia

August 20, 2014 10:17 am ET

Cooper Standard Automotive Inc. is forming Cooper Standard Inoac Pte. Ltd. — a joint venture with Inoac Corp. of Japan — to expand the rea...    More

Market Reports

Thermoformed Packaging 2014 Market Review & Outlook North America

This in-depth report analyzes economic and market trends, legislative/regulatory activity impacting supply and demand, business opportunities and threats, materials pricing, manufacturing technology, as well as growth strategies being implemented by thermoformed packaging companies.

Learn more

Pipe, Profile & Tubing Extrusion in North America 2014

U.S. demand for extruded plastics is expected to grow by 3 percent in 2014, with PVC remaining the largest segment.

Plastic pipe will post the strongest gains through 2018, continuing to take market share from competing materials in a range of markets.

Our latest market report provides in-depth analysis of current trends and their financial impact on the pipe, profile and tubing extrusion industry in North America.

Learn more

2014 Injection Molding Industry Report

GROWTH, OPPORTUNITY IN SIGHT FOR INJECTION MOLDERS IN 2014

In the wake of the economic turbulence earlier in this decade, molders today find themselves in much better shape. Molders are gaining a competitive advantage by investing in people, equipment and seeking inroads into new markets on a global scale.

Growth in the injection molding industry is going to be driven by low financing costs and a continued move to reshore some business.

Learn more

Upcoming Plastics News Events

September 10, 2014 - September 12, 2014Plastics Caps & Closures 2014

January 14, 2015 - January 14, 2015Plastics in Automotive

February 4, 2015 - February 6, 2015Plastics News Executive Forum 2015

More Events