Transportation electrification, and electric vehicles (EVs), are critical to a net-zero emissions economy. Consumer demand for EVs is growing exponentially, and companies are racing to meet it. Michigan is a leading producer of internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles and the shift to EVs will significantly impact workers and communities. With the right policies in place Michigan can take advantage of an expanded automotive value chain and remain an industry leader, attract and retain good jobs, and ensure that Michiganders reap the climate, health and economic benefits of the transition.

Key Findings:

  • Michigan’s economy stands to benefit tremendously from the EV transition if it proactively strengthens its position in EV production and deployment. Supportive policies enabling Michigan to increase its market share of EV assembly and battery production, along with increasing EV adoption could lead to tens of thousands of additional jobs, including 56,000 additional jobs in auto manufacturing in 2030.
  • Since EVs are cheaper to own and operate, Michigan car owners could save $40 billion cumulatively by 2040 on vehicle purchases, maintenance and gasoline. When the savings are re-spent it could lead to 27,000 additional jobs in Michigan’s economy.
  • Capturing the Inflation Reduction Act’s EV and battery tax credits could save Michigan car owners at least an additional $9 billion cumulatively by 2032, which when re-spent, could lead to 15,000 additional jobs in Michigan’s economy.
  • Through a shift to zero emissions transportation, Michigan would avoid approximately 4,700 health-related deaths, 97,400 asthma attacks, and 466,000 lost workdays by 2050. These health burdens are particularly prevalent in low-income communities.

For all the opportunities, there are also challenges and barriers including the possibility that Michigan’s market share and auto manufacturing jobs could decline if the state fails to seize the opportunities presented by the transition and enact policies outlined in the report.

  • There will be job gains in some segments of the automotive value chain (e.g., battery manufacturing, EV charging infrastructure) and shifts away from others (e.g., internal combustion engine manufacturing, auto repair and maintenance, and gasoline station jobs), making it extremely important that Michigan ensure an equitable transition that leaves no one behind.
  • Michigan’s overall economy has the capacity to adapt to the coming changes – and in fact the overall economy of the state is expected to add 880,000 jobs by 2040 – but it will require policies to ensure wins for affected workers and communities.
  • Based on extensive stakeholder consultations, this report proposes that Michigan should do the following: continue pursuing innovation-oriented economic development to attract investments and talent in the state’s expanding EV industry; equitably accelerate EV deployment; and create quality EV jobs that offer family-sustaining wages, security, and potential for career growth while ensuring that longtime auto workers and communities are not left behind.


Thumbnail image by Michael Fousert