Grünheide residents oppose Tesla’s expansion plans

Tesla is encountering resistance to plans to expand its German gigafactory. The citizens of Grünheide have now rejected an expansion of the factory site by a majority in a vote.

Image: Tesla

In addition to the existing 300-hectare factory site, Tesla wants to build a freight depot, warehouses and a company kindergarten on an additional 170 hectares. The plans have been known since 2022. The public consultation was about these new areas, but Tesla also aims to expand the plant on the existing factory site. The latter was explicitly not put to the vote.

It is still unclear exactly what will happen after the vote. According to media reports, it is not legally binding, but Grünheide’s mayor Arne Christiani said after the vote that the rejected development plan would no longer be presented to the municipal representatives in its current form. The next meeting of the municipal representatives is on 14 March – but the extension has not yet been on the agenda. The next meeting would then be on 16 May. In addition, the finance committee of the state parliament would have to approve the sale of the area by Brandenburg’s state forestry company.

As reported, Tesla wants to double its production capacity in Grünheide from 500,000 units to one million electric cars per year and, according to Brandenburg’s Ministry of the Environment, is also planning to “increase battery storage production capacity from the current 50 to 100 gigawatt-hours per year in the future”. The latter also includes the production of battery cells., (in German)


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