Tesla settles California hazardous waste lawsuit for $1.5 million

Tesla and the 25 counties of California sued the car manufacturer It already has facilities around the state for hazardous waste management agreed a few days after being sued. The court ordered the automaker to pay $1.5 million as part of a settlement that included hiring a third party to conduct annual waste audits of the dumpsters for five years. These auditors will take a close look at the company’s trash cans to check for hazardous materials.

The states suing Tesla, including Los Angeles and San Francisco, have accused the company of disposing of improperly labeled materials at transfer centers and landfills that are “not permitted to accept hazardous waste.” According to the complaint filed in San Joaquin County, Tesla was illegally dumping waste from the manufacturing and servicing of its vehicles.

Undercover investigators from the environmental division of the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office first found evidence of Tesla’s illegal activity in 2018. At the company’s service centers, they found trash cans containing materials such as aerosols, antifreeze, lubricants, and brake cleaners. , lead acid batteries, aerosols, antifreeze, waste solvents, electronic waste and paint waste when not needed. Investigators from the District Attorney’s Office of other California counties conducted their own investigations and found similar illegal orders. For example, Alameda County officials investigating the Fremont factory found illegal dumping of copper and primer-contaminated waste.

Tesla settled with the Environmental Protection Agency in 2019 over its handling of hazardous materials, and in addition to paying a $31,000 fine, it had to agree to properly manage waste at its Fremont plant. After being alerted to the problem, the automaker also took steps to check trash cans for hazardous waste before taking them to landfill. But as District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said, “against today’s settlement [the company] serves to provide a cleaner environment for citizens within the province by preventing pollution [their] Valuable natural resources when hazardous waste is improperly managed and disposed of illegally.” With regular third-party verification of Tesla’s continued compliance with the agreement, authorities will ensure the company does not illegally dump hazardous materials on state land for the next several years. can provide.

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