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Germany court halts development of Tesla ‘Gigafactory’ in forest outside Berlin
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Germany court halts development of Tesla ‘Gigafactory’ in forest outside Berlin

A German court on Saturday ordered a temporary halt in the clearing of thousands of trees to make room for a Tesla development site in a forest southeast of Berlin.

The Higher Administrative Court of Berlin-Brandenburg ruled that they must first consider the appeal from Green League Brandenburg, an environmental association. The League filed an emergency appeal on Friday to stop the clearing of forests for the “Gigafactory.”

The court decided that the felling could be halted because it would have been completed in just three more days, and the court did not want to dismiss the activist group’s appeal without hearing it.

In response to the court order, Tesla has highlighted a company webpage detailing the company’s plans to “replant an area three times the factory plot, with mixed trees native to their habitat and the potential to become an old growth forest,” along with other environmental measures.

Tesla plans to begin production at the new facility at a rate of 10,000 cars a week by 2021. The site would be the company’s fourth “Gigafactory,” with others located in Nevada, New York and Shanghai.

The final construction permit for the project has not yet been issued. Complaints against the factory can be filed until March 3, after which the final permit will be reviewed.