Tesla pays $ 750,000 fine and builds solar-powered microgrid system to solve California air quality violations

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Tesla has agreed to pay a $ 750,000 fine and install a solar roof project to resolve air quality violations at its Fremont, California plant. officials announced Friday.

The Bay Area Air Quality Management District, which regulates air pollution in nine counties in the San Francisco Bay Area, said the settlement involves 33 reports of violations dating back to 2015, including “ installing or modifying equipment without proper permits. , failure to perform required emissions testing, failure to maintain records and timely reporting information to the Air District. “

The violations have since been corrected and Tesla is back in compliance, according to the air district statement.

Both parties agreed that the fine would be $ 1 million, but a spokesman said told the Mercury News that Tesla will pay $ 750,000 directly to the air district general operating fund. Tesla will then receive a $ 250,000 credit once it completes the installation of a community microgrid system, including rooftop solar panels, as part of the air district’s Community Health Protection Program. That program “focuses on improving air quality and public health in the worst affected areas of the Bay Area,” the statement read. “The goal of this project is to reduce electricity costs and local air pollution emissions within the community.”

Where the microgrid will be installed has yet to be determined. The settlement with the air quality district “also requires Tesla to implement a comprehensive environmental management system” to ensure the company’s full compliance with environmental requirements in the future. The air quality agency statement did not include information on a deadline for when Tesla should complete the microgrid project.

Tesla has been fighting government officials in Fremont for the past year, defying local pandemic shutdown demands. CEO Elon Musk threatened to move Tesla’s headquarters out of California, but earlier this year permits submitted by the company to expand its Fremont plant, suggesting the move was canceled.

Last month, Tesla reported record earnings of $ 438 million for the first quarter of 2021, with sales of $ 10.4 billion.