Axion Power International is a corporation operating out of New Castle, Pennsylvania and has gained a stellar reputation as a leading developer of advanced lead-carbon PbC batteries. Today, the company took a major step towards enhancing their future with the announcement that Company Chairman and CEO Tom Granville will participate in a panel discussion that will be led by National Wildlife Federation President and CEO Larry Schweiger. Axion, which is located right outside of Pittsburgh, will discuss the historic coal-mining city’s role as a leader in the clean energy economy.
For Granville to be included in this panel is a distinguished moment for both himself and Axion. Other members of the panel include U.S. Representative Mike Doyle, 14th District, Pennsylvania; Kathleen McGinty, principal in Peregrine Technology Partners and former Secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection in Pennsylvania and Michael Peck, president of Gamesa. They will discuss how Pittsburgh has become, and can continue to be, a national leader in renewable energy. The event will begin at 8:00 AM on Thursday, Sept. 24 at the G20 Media Center, August Wilson Center located at 980 Liberty Avenue in Pittsburgh.
Granville, who is a noted name in his industry and a graduate of Canisus College, has led a storied career amongst his accomplishments. For 10 years he served as a President of the National Elevator Industry where his duties included labor negotiations for national contracts and the oversight of a $2.3 Billion pension fund prior to taking the leadership role at Axion.
Amongst the topics Mr. Granville will speak of is the continued need for reducing CO2 emissions, how the European automotive OEM’s will provide a solution for that reduction and how that solution can be brought to the US in part because Axion has the disruptive technology to make this happen.
One of the key aspects of Axion’s success is that the proprietary PbC batteries have higher power and more efficient delivery of that power which will make the battery last longer and be far more cost-effective than any of its peers.
While this is a great moment in time for Axion, it is also a major step towards enhancing the great area of Pittsburgh. For over two centuries, Pittsburgh has been known as a coal and steel mining town where blue-collar workers have made their city great. More recently, the town and its industry has been romanticized in films like “All the Right Moves” and their Pittsburgh Steelers football team have been the most successful franchise in the history of the NFL. With such a proud history, Pittsburgh has suffered some because of a downward economy. This may change because the area is now positioned to be an epicenter of renewable energy innovation as it helps traditional industries make the transition to a low carbon future. Axion Power will be a participant in that journey to a green economy.
When asked about the impact on Axion and Pittsburgh, Granville commented by saying, “Pennsylvania in general, and Western Pennsylvania in particular, have been stalwart in their emphasis and development of a green energy sector. The Commonwealth, through governor Rendell’s administrative team, has been a great partner to our development. Axion Power purchased the assets and re-commissioned a mothballed lead-acid battery plant in New Castle and we transitioned our entire operation down from Canada. We found a willing work force and a supportive government, so we are extremely happy we are now operating in Pennsylvania.”
He continued, “This year, we signed a four-year global supply agreement with Exide Technologies for the purchase of our PbC(R) proprietary batteries and other Axion Technology. With that contract, and an emerging European hybrid electric vehicle market that our product is perfectly suited for in terms of both performance and economics, we are poised to dramatically expand our work force here in Western Pennsylvania. There will be challenges of course, but with the continued assistance and cooperation of our partners in and out of government, Axion can serve as a prime example of how the Pittsburgh economy can benefit from what we refer to as the “circle of green.”