Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s promise to replant three times as many trees as his company will remove in Germany is starting to take shape. Tesla has reportedly found the areas where it will plant trees to replace those that are cut down for the construction of Giga Berlin in Grünheide, Germany.
The company will replant trees in many different areas, but the largest spaces of land where the replanting will be held have reportedly been selected. According to the Brandenburg Area Agency and rbb24, these areas are Brandenburg an der Havel (located 64 miles of Giga Berlin), Baruth/Mark (located 41.6 miles from Grünheide) and Bad Saarow (located 20.8 miles from the Giga Berlin site).
Half of the trees that Tesla will plant must be deciduous, according to local agencies. They want to focus on trees that have more value environmentally. This is different from the pine trees currently inhabiting the Giga Berlin complex, which are intended to be used for commercial cardboard production.
The Brandenburg Area Agency requested the replacement trees be spread over the Brandenburg region instead of one concentrated area. Tesla obliged.
Tesla began removing trees from the 90 hectares of land on January 6. The process was met with some speed bumps, however. Not only was the company required to have the first tree removal phase completed by February 27 due to the bird breeding season that takes place in early March, but its presence was met with protests from some local residents as well.
After clarifying some of the concerns that the construction of Giga Berlin would have on the land and local citizens, Tesla CEO Elon Musk stated the company would be positively impacting the environment. “Giga Berlin will build sustainable energy vehicles using sustainable energy, so net environmental impact will be extremely positive,” he said on Twitter.
For sure. Giga Berlin will build sustainable energy vehicles using sustainable energy, so net environmental impact will be extremely positive!
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) January 25, 2020
Interestingly enough, Conservation Officer Axel Heinzel-Berndt stated that the automaker would have a tough time finding sufficient or appropriate land to replace the trees they would have to cut down.
“It will be difficult to find arable land on this scale. But it is also conceivable that, instead, species-poor pine forest is converted into mixed forest,’ he said in an interview with taz.de. This issue has evidently been cleared up and will no longer be a worry to local environmentalists.
The German Forest Protection Association has also given Tesla their approval. They believe that the removal of the pine forest may actually be a good thing because Tesla has offered the “correct compensation” with trees that are better suited for sustainability and positive environmental impact in the long run.