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Republican say they're concerned about environmental impact of proposed battery plant

A rendering shows a proposed Gotion battery plant near Big Rapids.
Executive Office of the Governor
A rendering shows a proposed Gotion battery plant near Big Rapids.

Republican minority leaders in the Michigan House and Senate are expressing another concern about a large battery plant slated for construction near Big Rapids.

Republican legislators have voiced dismay about the large amount of state tax incentives for the Gotion project, as well as fears that the company is tied to the Chinese Communist Party.

That's because Gotion is owned by a China-based parent company.

Now, their third concern is the prospective plant's impact on the environment. In a letter to the acting director of the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy, the legislators asked for the release of all the documents the agency has in its possession about those impacts.

But the department says it hasn't received a single permit request from Gotion yet. EGLE says all the documents related to the Gotion project will be made available to the public — once they exist.

Tracy Samilton covers energy and transportation, including the auto industry and the business response to climate change for Michigan Public. She began her career at Michigan Public as an intern, where she was promptly “bitten by the radio bug,” and never recovered.
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