Tesla can continue to cut trees for German ‘gigafactory’

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From pv magazine Germany

The Higher Administrative Court for Berlin-Brandenburg ruled on Thursday evening that Tesla can continue to clear land for its new “gigafactory” in Grünheide, Germany.

The judges rejected requests from German environmental associations Grüne Liga Brandenburg and Vereins für Landschaftspflege und Artenschutz in Bavaria to block construction. The court stated that the company had met all legal requirements to work on the site.

The environmental assessment procedure for the gigafactory in Grünheide is still ongoing, however, with a final decision expected in March. That said, the judges ruled that the company can start clearing trees at the planned factory site.

Tesla had to suspend work at the site last week following an initial administrative court decision. The company had already secured approval to buy a 300-hectare site in Grünheide at the end of January, but the final purchase price is still unclear.

The U.S. electric car manufacturer plans to produce up to 500,000 units of its Model 3 and Model Y variants and future models per year at the planned location near Berlin. It aims to officially begin manufacturing activities its first European gigafactory in mid-2021 and plans to create at least 6,000 jobs.