Overnight Cybersecurity

Hillicon Valley — Biden outlines $3B in EV battery investments 

President Biden
Greg Nash
President Biden gives remarks virtually to the Summit on Fire Prevention and Control in the South Court Auditorium on the White House campus in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday, October 11, 2022.

President Biden outlined a $3 billion investment to boost domestic batteries in a push to boost electric vehicle production.  

Meanwhile, Amazon founder Jeff Bezos issued a grim economic warning.  

This is Hillicon Valley, detailing all you need to know about tech and cyber news from Capitol Hill to Silicon Valley. Send tips to The Hill’s Rebecca Klar and Ines Kagubare. Someone forward you this newsletter? Subscribe here.

Biden aims to boost EV production  

President Biden on Wednesday outlined nearly $3 billion in investments to boost domestic battery manufacturing, which officials said will help meet the need for critical supplies as the country ramps up electric vehicle (EV) production. 

Biden and Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm announced the $2.8 billion worth of grants through the bipartisan infrastructure law passed last year at a White House event. The funding will be spread across 20 different companies for projects in at least 12 states. A senior administration official said the funding will lead to 8,000 new jobs, 5,000 of which are expected to be permanent. 

The announcement focused on two key efforts for Biden since taking office: Strengthening supply chains and promoting the transition to a more climate-friendly economy. 

  • The investments will allow U.S. manufacturers to process critical minerals like lithium and nickel that are used in battery production, guarding against supply chain disruptions, administration officials said. Those materials are particularly important in the production of electric vehicle batteries, as Biden has called for half of all vehicles to be electric by 2030. 
  • “This market transformation is expected to increase demand for critical minerals such as lithium and graphite used in EV batteries,” the White House said in a fact sheet. “Today’s announcements demonstrate how the United States is poised to meet this challenge while growing our economy and creating high-quality union jobs in the battery supply chain.” 

Read more here.  

Bezos warns to ‘batten down the hatches’ 

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos on Tuesday weighed in on the state of the economy, warning it’s time to “batten down the hatches” as a recession may lie ahead.  

“Yep, the probabilities in this economy tell you to batten down the hatches,” Bezos said on Twitter.   

The online retail giant’s founder shared a video of Goldman Sachs CEO David Solomon telling business owners to be cautious and “expect that there’s more volatility on the horizon.”   

Bezos’s alarm bells add to a growing number of prominent voices cautioning that a recession could be pending. 

JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon on Monday forecasted the U.S. will fall into “some kind of recession” before the end of next year.   

Read more here.  

NETFIX ADDS 2.4M SUBSCRIBERS 

The streaming giant Netflix said Tuesday that it picked up 2.4 million subscribers this summer, making up for losses during the first half of the year. 

In its third-quarter financial results, Netflix said it came back from a loss of around a million subscribers in the first half of 2022 with a surge from July-September for a new total of 223 million subscribers.   

“After a challenging first half, we believe we’re on a path to reaccelerate growth,” the company reported in a letter to shareholders Tuesday, noting that the key to growth moving forward is “pleasing members” with Netflix series and movies so that they spread word of the service to their friends and stay subscribed.  

The company has long boasted ad-free content behind its subscription paywall, but it is set to launch a lower-priced, ad-supported plan in a handful of countries this November, in addition to its ad-free plan.

Read more here.  

BITS & PIECES

An op-ed to chew on: As Puerto Rico recovers, we all need to ask how to make grids more resilient 

Notable links from around the web: 

Dollars to Megabits, You May Be Paying 400 Times As Much As Your Neighbor for Internet Service (The Markup / Leon Yin and Aaron Sankin) 

US Official Sees More Aggressive Cybersecurity Threats in Asia (Bloomberg / Philip Heijmans) 

Privacy Executives Hope Trans-Atlantic Deal Withstands Court Challenges (The Wall Street Journal / Catherine Stupp) 

🍂 Lighter click: The two types of people in fall

One more thing: Taylor Swift’s message to voters 

Taylor Swift posted a message on her Instagram story Wednesday encouraging her fans to vote early in the 2022 midterm elections. 

“There are only 20 midnights until the 2022 United States Midterm Elections on November 8,” Swift wrote in her post, referencing her upcoming album slated for release Friday, titled “Midnights.” 

She included specific information about voting in her home state, adding, “If you’re in Tennessee, you can cast your ballot today through November 3 at Early Voting sites! Waits are usually shorter than on Election Day.” 

“Most states offer some type of early voting. Register to vote and find Early Voting locations in your state,” Swift posted, with a link to vote.org. 

Read more here.  

That’s it for today, thanks for reading. Check out The Hill’s Technology and Cybersecurity pages for the latest news and coverage. We’ll see you tomorrow.

Tags Biden David Solomon Jeff Bezos Jennifer Granholm
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