Michigan governor Jennifer Granholm visited the 2010 Business of Plugging In conference in downtown Detroit yesterday, capping her trip with a short drive in a white 2011 Chevrolet Volt. She also stopped and learned about a number of the vehicles on display – the Ford Focus EV, the Smart ED, the Mini E and more – before giving her assessment that these early plug-in vehicles represent the cusp of something very big.:
Granholm, whose administration has worked hard to bring companies to the state that will move the auto industry from its traditional petroleum-powered roots to one that plays well with electrons, said she hopes the trend continues once a new governor takes power early next year (she is term-limited out after serving for eight years):In the next wave, you're going to be able to drive into your home and plug in your vehicle and that battery is going to be an assist for you to power your home. Perhaps you will be powering your car through solar panels on your roof or the small wind system that's attached to the side of your house and so you will be completely free of oil.
(This post continues after the jump.)It had better continue on beyond our administration. We've got 17 companies in Michigan just in the past year that are coming to do the infrastructure for the battery. So we've got those who are supplying the electrolytes, the cells, the anode, the cathode, the separators – all of that ecosystem of a battery is happening in Michigan. Those 17 companies would not have been here, frankly, but for the state and federal incentives. But now that they're here and they've made the investments in the technology and the equipment, they're going to stay and for us, in the next ten years, those 17 companies are projected to create 63,000 jobs.