The Challenge

  • Securing America’s Future Energy (SAFE) is an advocacy organization focused on policies that improve America’s energy security by significantly curtailing U.S. dependence on oil and promoting responsible use of domestic energy resources.
  • In 2021, SAFE launched its Commanding Heights Initiative, which included a set of policy proposals related to U.S. electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing, critical mineral supply chains, and next-generation transportation technologies.
  • To strengthen its advocacy efforts for these policies, SAFE commissioned Keybridge to quantify the state-level employment impacts of nine policy proposals designed to speed the transition from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to EV manufacturing.

Our Solution

  • Using its deep expertise in macroeconomics, Keybridge developed realistic modeling assumptions for each policy proposal, including expected regulatory impacts on EV sales; uptake and disbursal rates for new tax credits and grants; the price trajectory for ICE vehicles, EVs, and EV batteries; and the interaction between the demand for ICE vehicles and EVs over time.
  • After matching each proposal with the appropriate sub-sectors that would be directly impacted, Keybridge modeled how each of SAFE’s policy proposals would impact each sub-sector within each state over a five-year period using IMPLAN.
  • Throughout the project, Keybridge carefully documented and defended each modeling assumption to ensure transparency. Keybridge aimed to strike the right balance between the two extremes of (1) a simplistic model that is easy to communicate but insufficiently robust and (2) a complex but over-specified model that results in false precision.

End Results

  • Keybridge’s modeling work demonstrated the job growth that would accrue if SAFE’s policy proposals were pursued. Job gains were concentrated in domestic manufacturing, including the fast-growing domestic EV battery manufacturing industry. Job gains were particularly strong in states with an established footprint in automobile manufacturing (e.g., Ohio and Michigan) and states that are establishing themselves as EV manufacturing hubs (e.g., Tennessee and Nevada). In states where job growth was projected to suffer due to SAFE’s policies, Keybridge offered recommendations to help offset the negative impacts.
  • SAFE used Keybridge’s modeling results and Commanding Heights report in its policy advocacy efforts, and Keybridge participated in a SAFE-sponsored webinar with DOE Secretary Jennifer Granholm to discuss the report’s findings. Keybridge also presented the findings of the report to economists and policymakers at a conference sponsored by the Federal Reserve Banks of Kansas City and Dallas.

[Secretary of Energy] Granholm talked about SAFE’s report on clean transportation job opportunities, saying it confirms that “solutions to the climate crisis can create massive job opportunities for the economy and American people.”

– Utility Dive, March 10, 2021