AP

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

President Joe Biden speaks at a campaign rally Saturday, March 9, 2024, at Pullman Yards in Atlanta...

Associated Press

US shoots down ‘nearly all’ Iran-launched attack drones as Biden vows support for Israel’s defense

Joe Biden cut short a weekend stay at his beach house to meet with his national security team as Iran launched an attack against Israel.

14 hours ago

Protesters in Phoenix shout as they join thousands marching around the Arizona state Capitol after ...

Associated Press

Abortion ruling supercharges Arizona to be an especially important swing state

A ruling this week instituting a near-total abortion ban supercharged Arizona's role, turning it into the most critical battleground.

1 day ago

Former President Donald Trump, center, appears in court for his arraignment, Tuesday, April 4, 2023...

Associated Press

Manhattan court searching for jurors to hear first-ever criminal case against a former president

Jury selection is set to start Monday in former President Donald Trump's hush money case — the first trial of the presumptive nominee.

1 day ago

Emergency personnel arrive on the scene after a  an 18-wheeler crashed into the Texas Department of...

Associated Press

1 dead and 13 injured in semitrailer crash at a Texas public safety office, with the driver jailed

A driver rammed an 18-wheeler though the front of a building where his renewal for a commercial driver’s license had been rejected.

1 day ago

Republican presidential candidate former President Donald Trump speaks at a Get Out The Vote rally ...

Associated Press

Trump pushes Arizona lawmakers to ‘remedy’ state abortion ruling that he says ‘went too far’

Donald Trump urged Arizona lawmakers on Friday to swiftly “remedy” the state court ruling allowing prosecutors to enforce an abortion ban.

1 day ago

Biden to require more gun dealers to run background checks....

Associated Press

Biden administration will require thousands more gun dealers to run background checks on buyers

New Biden rule to require thousands more firearms dealers across the United States will have to run background checks on buyers.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Here’s 1 way to ensure your family is drinking safe water

Water is maybe one of the most important resources in our lives, and especially if you have kids, you want them to have access to safe water.

...

Fiesta Bowl Foundation

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade is excitingly upon us

The 51st annual Vrbo Fiesta Bowl Parade presented by Lerner & Rowe is upon us! The attraction honors Arizona and the history of the game.

West Virginia plant to make batteries for US energy grid