German court stops the cutting of trees for the Tesla project

Anushka Mansharamani

On 10th December 2020, the German Court called a halt to the tree cutting at the site of Tesla’s project.

Earlier this week, the environmentalists approached the court in an attempt to stop the clearing of the forests as the cutting down of trees would lead to the endangering of hibernating snakes.

Previously a higher regional administrative court had passed an order in favour of the plaintiffs stating that Tesla had taken a considerate amount of measures to protect the reptiles in that area.

On the other hand, the lower regional court in Frankfurt had reviewed a complaint by the NABU environmental group, which put forth the argument that the snakes, reptiles, and lizards would be at risk if the project continues.

This legal battle has led to cultural differences over the meaning of environmental protection.

In German law, it is easier to win an order for passing a halt on the work of a construction project, however, this does not mean that the court would pass the verdict in the favour of the plaintiffs.

According to the Brandenburg Higher Administrative Court, the temporary halt gives the court the time to review the case before the damage is caused.

Permission to continue the Tesla construction now depends on the approval given by the local authorities after consultation with the environmentalists.

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