UAW and Forever Energy Announce Neutrality Agreement
Detroit, MI, Shreveport, LA (Sept. 22, 2022) – The International Union, United Automobile, Aerospace and Agricultural Implement Workers of America (UAW) and Forever Energy announced they have reached a labor neutrality agreement that captures the company and union’s commitment to mutual respect and open communication.
Forever Energy’s new facility will be in the one-million-square-foot factory that was shuttered in 2012 by General Motors at Port of Caddo Bossier in Shreveport, Louisiana. Forever Energy is quickly ramping up and hopes to employ as many as 2,000 workers that will be needed once the plant is operating at capacity within a few years. By committing to a pact of union neutrality and recognizing the majority will of its workforce, Forever Energy joins the ranks of employers committed to ensuring that the transition to electric vehicles does not come at the expense of workers and their communities.
Forever Energy is on pace to become the first U.S.-based company to manufacture vanadium redox flow batteries using technology created by U.S. scientists, funded by U.S. taxpayers, and produced by American workers free to exercise their right to have a voice on the job. Vanadium flow batteries (“VFB”) are a critical step forward in renewable energy and battery technology. Forever Energy’s vanadium-based solar storage system is a 30-year renewable energy solution for home and commercial markets. As one of the most advanced renewable energy sources, vanadium flow batteries promise to improve battery storage efficiency and longevity and outperforms lithium and prior generation vanadium flow batteries.
The state-of-the-art vanadium flow batteries will help the U.S. become less reliant China, which dominates the battery market. According to the Financial Times, Chinese firms, either owned or supported by the Chinese government, currently produce 60% of passenger EVs sold around the globe and produce almost 70% of battery cells. China also controls approximately 80% of the supply of rare earth minerals, which are essential for aerospace, defense, and EV production, and may impose export controls on these vital materials. Companies such as Forever Energy are essential for ensuring EVs and technologies are made in the United States.
“We commend the innovation of Forever Energy as they work to ensure domestic production of these vital components,” says UAW President Ray Curry. “But Forever Energy doesn’t stop there. They want to ensure that their workers have dignity and a voice on the job. By respecting the majority will of its workforce, Forever Energy sets the model of how employers in the emerging EV battery market should behave.” Curry adds: “This agreement with Forever Energy comes on the heels on passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, which invests tens of billions of dollars to help ensure EVs and other technologies of the future are made in the U.S. All of this is great news for workers, the environment, and our economy.”
“American companies must lead the U.S. energy transition – it’s what’s best for our economy, our communities and our national security,” said Craig Jones, CEO of Forever Energy. “I look forward to opening the doors to Forever Energy’s battery production facility, where workers with a voice on the job will help make renewable energy available to everyone.”