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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Southern California: The Detroit of Electric Cars?


The California economy is in the doldrums, especially in the Los Angeles region, owing in large part to the decline of aerospace-defense industries. The region also suffers from the nation's worst pollution problem, owing largely to its dependence on automobiles. So, we're led to ask whether these linked perils might be converted into a combined opportunity. We ask whether we might blunt both the environmental and the employment problems by building a new electric-vehicle industry in Southern California that exploits its skilled but underemployed labor and managerial resources and creates a transportation system that doesn't pollute.

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