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Forest near Tesla factory occupied by 80 activists

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Forest near Tesla factory occupied by 80 activists

Panorama protest against expansion

Dozens of activists occupy forest near Tesla factory

As of: 08:21 a.m. | Reading time: 2 minutes

The Tesla Gigafactory Berlin-Brandenburg plant

Source: Patrick Pleul/dpa

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A majority of citizens in Grünheide have spoken out against the planned expansion of the Tesla factory – an activist group has now occupied the area of ​​forest that was intended for the expansion. You don’t trust that politicians will adhere to the people’s vote.

Around 80 activists from the “Stop Tesla” initiative have occupied a forest near the company’s car factory in Grünheide to protest against the planned factory expansion. They also want to support the vote of the citizens of Grünheide, who voted against the corresponding development plan in a residents’ survey, as the initiative announced on Thursday. The group built tree houses on the approximately 120 hectare forest that is to be cleared to expand the site. Environmental activists said the occupation near Fangschleuse train station was planned for an indefinite period of time.

“Our main concern is the drinking water protection area,” said activist Caro Weber of the German Press Agency. The initiative does not trust that politicians will follow the will of the residents, since the existing plant was already built with special permits. Part of the Tesla site is located in the drinking water protection area. Tesla also built its factory using early approvals.

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The company’s expansion plans for the car factory were largely rejected by the citizens of Grünheide. Almost two thirds voted against the plans last week. The vote is not legally binding. The local council still has to approve a development plan.

The electric car manufacturer wants to build a freight station, warehouses and a company kindergarten in addition to the existing 300-hectare factory site. To achieve this, more than 100 hectares of forest will be cleared. Conservationists and citizens’ initiatives, among others, are against the expansion.

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