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The Dow Chemical Company on June 21 hosted Vice President Joe Biden at its corporate headquarters in Midland, Mich., where Dow showcased several of the company’s major green tech initiatives that address global needs for alternative energy production and energy storage.
These initiatives, which have benefited from $750 million in federal and state economic incentives, are leading to breakthrough technologies, new manufacturing facilities and thousands of well-paying jobs, all of which are making mid-Michigan a green tech hub that will contribute to a new era of economic growth in the U.S.
Among the projects highlighted at the event were the new DOW POWERHOUSE Solar Shingles (named one of the best inventions of 2009 by Time Magazine), Dow’s breakthrough diesel particulate filters (which deliver better gas mileage and lower emissions from diesel engines) and many new and innovative energy efficiency and insulation solutions.
Biden’s visit to Midland coincided with a groundbreaking ceremony for a new manufacturing facility that will produce lithium-ion battery packs for next-generation hybrid and electric vehicles. Biden's appearance is part of a six-week focus on economic Recovery Act infrastructure projects nationwide.
The plant, being built by Dow Kokam, a joint venture between Dow and TK Advanced Battery LLC, will employ more than 800 people and have the capacity to manufacture 1.2 billion watt hours of large format affordable lithium-ion batteries.
“We’re 'rebooting' the American manufacturing base right here in Midland, Mich., and redefining what it means to say 'Built in the USA,'” said Andrew N. Liveris, Dow chairman and CEO. “All of these green tech programs show the great results that can be achieved when government and industry work together toward a common goal. We’re confident technological innovation, job creation, and sustained economic growth like this can take place all over the U.S. if we address head-on the major issues that are limiting a robust resurgence of U.S. manufacturing activity.”
Utilizing its unique position in industry and its connection to virtually all sectors of the economy, Dow has developed an Advanced Manufacturing Plan for America that calls for action on a number of fronts to lower structural costs that are suffocating U.S. manufacturing, and establishes a broad policy framework that will enable economic growth while at the same time considering a multitude of issues ranging from tax reform to climate change to education.
“We believe enactment of pro-manufacturing policies will enable companies like Dow to stem the tide of job loss in America and put people back to work in specialized, high-paying jobs like the thousands we are creating right here in mid-Michigan.” Liveris said.
Dow also intends to continue its record investments in research and development (R&D), which is key to driving innovation, economic re-investment, and fulfillment of its public commitment to address world challenges through sustainable chemistry.
Dow is once again investing $1.6 billion in R&D in 2010, more than the combined R&D budgets of every university chemistry department in the United States. Since 2005, the Company has invested more than $9 billion in R&D to speed innovation, create jobs and transform Dow into an earnings growth company.
About The Dow Chemical Company
Dow combines the power of science and technology with the “Human Element” to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The company connects chemistry and innovation with the principles of sustainability to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, renewable energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s diversified industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 160 countries and in high growth sectors such as electronics, water, energy, coatings and agriculture. In 2009, Dow had annual sales of $45 billion and employed approximately 52,000 people worldwide. The company’s more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 214 sites in 37 countries across the globe.