Tesla is starting to clear another 170 acres of forest at Gigafactory Berlin to prepare for a massive expansion of the EV factory.
Gigafactory Berlin currently sits on about 300 hectares that Tesla acquired for the giant manufacturing project.
The site is located in a large forested area and the automaker had to clear a large part of the forest in order to create space for the construction of the plant.
It was a controversial project for some conservationists due to some animal species living in the area that could have their habitats affected, but the automaker was eventually approved to clear the area in 2020.
Here are the sections that Tesla cleared:
The first section cleared for the first phase of the factory consists of 90 hectares or about 220 acres. It was completed in early 2020.
Now we learn that Tesla is starting to clear another 70 hectares (approximately 170 acres) for an expansion (via rbb24, translated from German):
The US electric car manufacturer Tesla wants to expand its factory in Grünheide (Oder-Spree) in Brandenburg. The next expansion stage on the site is currently being prepared to expand production capacity, as the German Press Agency learned from the company on Friday. For this purpose, 70 hectares of pine forest would be cleared from this Friday.
The expansion is already attracting attention from environmentalists who again plan to voice concerns about the deforestation effort.
Last month, we reported on Tesla applying for permits for an expansion project at Gigafactory Berlin that includes building a freight depot, train station, training center, and kindergarten, as well as more logistics areas to support production.
The first phase of Gigafactory Berlin aims to produce 5,000 Model Y vehicles per week and the automaker is currently producing 2,000 units per week.
Tesla is also planning to build battery cells at the factory and eventually build other electric vehicles.
The company already employs 7,000 workers at the factory, but the number of workers is expected to increase to 12,000 at full scale.
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Author: Fred Lambert