February 13

Tesla has started the deforestation process at Gigafactory Berlin as it cleared some of the main red tape related to environmental issues in the building process.

Last year, Musk confirmed that Tesla would build Gigafactory 4 in the “Berlin area”. which will make it ‘Gigafactory Berlin’.

The project will sit on a 300-hectare plot of land next to the GVZ Berlin-Ost Freienbrink industrial park, which Tesla is trying to buy for €40 million.

Musk said that Tesla will build “batteries, powertrains, and vehicles, starting with Model Y” at Gigafactory Berlin in Germany.

Over the last two months, the plan for the new factory has been gradually revealed through new construction plans and environmental assessments.

In order to build, Tesla is going to have to cut down a large number of trees. The section that needs to be deforested is shown in red below:

The company is expected to start the process soon and will be finished by the end of February.

Even though Tesla committed to planting three times as many trees as it is going to cut down, it is a controversial process due to the complex nature of the ecosystem.

As we previously reported, one issue is that the forest is home to many animals, and one of them is an endangered species of bat that Tesla is going to have to move.

The deforestation effort has also led to protests at the site last month.

After the protests last month, Musk tried to ease some Tesla Gigafactory Berlin environmental concerns.

We’ve now learned that Tesla has been authorized to start deforestation at the site and there are now reports that the work has started:

Jörg Steinbach, Minister for the Economy, Labor and Energy of the State of Brandenburg, tweeted a picture and announced:

“It starts! Preparations for construction have started. A historical photo from a few minutes ago.”

Tesla had previously guided that it needed to start the process in February in order to stay on schedule to build the plant and start production in July of next year.

Electrek’s Take

This is encouraging.

With Gigafactory Shanghai, Tesla set high standards for building a factory from scratch and starting production on a short timeline, but Germany is not like China.

There is a lot more red tape and things weren’t exactly looking good with all the environmental issues that Tesla needs to address and the protests, but it looks like things are moving along.

I am still skeptical of the timeline of production next summer, but I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt for now.

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