An overnight cardboard fire at Germany’s Tesla factory has reinvigorated locals who want the factory shut down for good.
Reports indicate that some 800 cubic meters of paper, cardboard, and wood reportedly caught fire outside of the Tesla Berlin Gigafactory in the early hours of the morning, resulting in huge flames and a number of dramatic photos being posted to social media.
Putting out the fire reportedly took several hours and dozens of local firefighters, including 12 from Tesla’s own “on staff” fire brigade, to get the fire under control this morning.
Firefighters Battle the Flames at Tesla Gigafactory Berlin
There were no injuries reported as of the time of this writing, but it’s worth noting that this was a serious fire. 800 cubic meters is a huge amount of material, with aqua-calc putting the weight of all that paper and cardboard at more than two million pounds (!?).
The fire has reinvigorated local environmental groups who have been pushing to have the plant shut down amid concerns that the factory could pose risks to the local water supply. Those concerns were dismissed by Tesla early on in the project, but seemed validated when more than 15,000 liters of toxic paint were leaked just a few short weeks after the plant opened earlier this year.
Citing the untold tons of potentially toxic carbon emissions resulting from the fire – whose root cause is, as yet, unknown – Citizens’ Initiative Grünheide (BI) representative, Steffen Schorcht wrote of the fire, “our worst fears have come true. We demand a production stop until the causes and circumstances have been clarified and all safety-related measures in the water protection area have been implemented.”
It remains to be seen what action, if any, local governments will take to ensure that something like this doesn’t happen at the Tesla factory again.