German Tesla plant faces problem as public consultation repeats itself
BERLIN – An online consultation allowing local citizens to voice their objections against the massive Tesla plant near Berlin will be repeated, the regional Environment Ministry said Thursday, fearing the process may not comply with the regulations.
Tesla CEO Elon Musk said during a visit to the Gruenheide plant site on October 9 that he hoped to start production in November, which looks increasingly unlikely as authorities must d ‘Review the latest submissions first before deciding whether or not to grant approval.
The repeated process, open only to those who expressed an objection in previous public consultations but were not satisfied with Tesla or the Environment Department’s response, will run from November 2 to 22, the statement said.
Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Authorities decided to repeat the process after environmental groups disputed in a separate case also posted online that citizens had not been warned well in advance that the consultation would be digital, raising concerns that it the same goes for the Tesla consultation.
“Since, in the absence of case examples, it is difficult to assess which legal opinion the administrative courts of Brandenburg would adopt in the event of a lawsuit, the licensing authority decided to repeat the online consultation in the emission control procedure for the vehicle plant. for reasons of legal certainty, “he said.
Objections submitted in the previous round will still be valid, the statement said.
During his two-year battle to start production at the site, Musk expressed his irritation with German laws and processes, arguing that the complex planning requirements were at odds with the urgency needed to tackle climate change. .
The factory and adjacent battery plant are expected to produce at least 500,000 battery-electric vehicles per year and generate 50 Gwh of capacity, overtaking German competitors on both fronts.
In his third quarter results report Tesla said on Wednesday that testing of the machines at the Gruenheide plant is on schedule and that it expects to receive the final permit by the end of the year.
The factory will build Model Y crossovers, he said.
A Tesla spokesperson said on Thursday the company is maintaining its goal of starting to produce cars before the end of the year and then ramping up as quickly as possible.