West Virginia plant to make batteries for US energy grid

Dec 22, 2022, 12:04 PM | Updated: 1:04 pm

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — A company that plans to make batteries for the U.S. energy grid will locate its first full-scale manufacturing plant in a former steel town in West Virginia, creating at least 750 jobs in a $760 million investment, Gov. Jim Justice said Thursday.

Massachusetts-based Form Energy will build the plant on a 55-acre site once occupied by Weirton Steel in the Northern Panhandle. Construction is expected to begin next year with manufacturing of battery systems set to start in 2024, the company said.

Form Energy focuses on energy storage technology and manufacturing. It has developed a battery whose active components are iron, water and air and is capable of storing electricity for 100 hours, said company co-founder and CEO Mateo Jaramillo, who led automaker Tesla ‘s powertrain business development program until 2016.

Over the next decade, the company’s goal for the battery is to unlock demand for multi-day energy storage in the United States and “accelerate the country’s trajectory toward a fully decarbonized and more reliable and resilient electric grid,” Jaramillo said in joining Justice at the announcement at the state Culture Center in Charleston.

The Weirton site along the Ohio River is about an hour from the company’s pilot manufacturing facility in southwestern Pennsylvania.

Weirton Steel, which operated a nearly 800-acre property, filed for bankruptcy protection in 2003. Cleveland-Cliffs now makes tin-plated products on the site, where employment tumbled from 6,100 in 1994 to less than 900 now.

“Weirton is a historic steel site with strong natural infrastructure and in a region of the country with the know-how to make great things out of iron,” Form Energy said in a statement.

Justice has made several job-related announcements this year aimed at helping to soften the loss of thousands of coal industry jobs in the state over the past decade. Among them included plans for a steel mill, a lithium-ion battery plant and a facility that makes electric school buses.

“This today is further testimony to us moving into an economy where we’re diversified even more,” Justice said. “We want West Virginia to be known evermore as that energy state that always figured it out.”

The announcement came as U.S. Census Bureau estimates released Thursday show that West Virginia lost residents for the 10th straight year. The estimates show the state’s population fell by 10,370 residents over the past year. The 0.6% decline was the fourth highest rate in the nation.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Dutch electronics giant Philips to cut 6,000 jobs worldwide

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — Dutch consumer electronics and medical equipment maker Philips said Monday it is cutting 6,000 jobs worldwide over the next two years as it revealed a net loss of 1.6 billion euros ($1.7 billion) in 2022, down from a net profit of 3.3 billion euros last year. The job losses come […]
1 hour ago
The Diesel price for trucks is displayed at a gas station in Frankfurt, Germany, Friday, Jan. 27, 2...
Associated Press

Will Europe’s ban on Russian diesel hike global fuel prices?

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Europe is taking another big step toward cutting its energy ties with Russia, banning imports of diesel fuel and other products made from crude oil in Russian refineries. The European Union ban takes effect Feb. 5 following its embargo on coal and most oil from Russia. The 27-nation bloc is trying […]
1 hour ago
FILE- Dried branches of a tree stand outside Adani Corporate House in Ahmedabad, India, Friday, Jan...
Associated Press

Adani accuses short-seller Hindenburg of attacking India

NEW DELHI, India (AP) — India’s Adani Group, run by Asia’s richest man, has hit back at a report from U.S.-based short-seller Hindenburg Research, calling it “malicious”, “baseless” and full of “selective misinformation.” Shares in the conglomerate have suffered massive losses since Hindenburg issued its report alleging fraud and other malfeasance. On Monday, shares in […]
1 hour ago
Garbage covers the base of a waterfall of the Nairobi River, which traverses informal settlements a...
Associated Press

Is there hope for a dying river in Kenya’s growing capital?

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Vultures scavenge for dead animals along a river turned sewer conduit in Kenya’s capital Nairobi. Its waters turn from clear to black as it traverses informal settlements and industrial hubs. The river and its tributaries cross Kibera, known as Africa’s largest slum with close to 200,000 residents, and other informal settlements. […]
1 hour ago
FILE - A staff walking near a Nissan logo at Nissan headquarters is seen though a window on May 12,...
Associated Press

Automakers Renault, Nissan make cross-shareholdings equal

TOKYO (AP) — Nissan and Renault have changed their mutual cross-shareholdings equal at 15%, ironing out a source of conflict in the Japan-French auto alliance. Up to now, Renault Group has held a 43.4% stake in Nissan Motor Co. It will transfer shares equivalent to a 28.4% stake to a French trust, so it will […]
1 day ago
FILE - North Koreans visit and pay respect to the statues of late leaders Kim Il Sung and Kim Jong ...
Associated Press

Russian embassy says North Korea lifted lockdown in capital

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Russia’s embassy in North Korea says the country has eased stringent epidemic controls in capital Pyongyang that were placed during the past five days to slow the spread of respiratory illnesses. North Korea has not officially acknowledged a lockdown in Pyongyang or a re-emergence of COVID-19 after leader Kim Jong […]
1 day ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Fiesta Bowl Foundation

Celebrate 50 years of Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade magic!

Since its first production in the early 1970s, the Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe has been a staple of Valley traditions, bringing family fun and excitement to downtown Phoenix.
(Photo via MLB's Arizona Fall League / Twitter)...
Arizona Fall League

Top prospects to watch at this year’s Arizona Fall League

One of the most exciting elements of the MLB offseason is the Arizona Fall League, which began its 30th season Monday.
...
Children’s Cancer Network

Children’s Cancer Network celebrates cancer-fighting superheroes, raises funds during September’s Childhood Cancer Awareness Month

Jace Hyduchak was like most other kids in his kindergarten class: He loved to play basketball, dress up like his favorite superheroes and jump as high as his pint-sized body would take him on his backyard trampoline.
West Virginia plant to make batteries for US energy grid