Running off renewable power is green washing.
Unsupported assertion, and odd given that the answers to your questions could refute it. All else being equal, renewable power reduces pollution compared to the alternatives. If you think they're doing it for appearances, feel free to present evidence for that.
Is the plant built of renewable steel?
Ha ha ha. Yes, they grow the steel on steel trees with organic fertilizers.
Do the batteries use renewable nickel?
They don't use nickel at all. They use recyclable lithium. There are some fairly low-impact ways of getting it (like evaporated seawater). The more of it that goes into service, the less it will have to be produced. Even optimistic scenarios for EV penetration in the transport sector show lithium production declining within years as recycling replaces production. The packs the automakers building now will generally have lifecycles measured in decades, after which >90% of the material will go back for remanufacturing.
Do the trucks delivering the parts run off renewable diesel?
Probably not yet. But the trend is toward lower-impact designs throughout the sector, especially with OEMs that are leading that transition. BMW just announced yesterday that it had built a 40-ton electric truck to shuttle parts from one plant to another.
I bet the 50% number stands up well in an in depth analysis.
Back to my initial point, which I thought was clear enough: without actually doing the analysis, we'd both be unwise to support specific figures for the industry or this specific plant. The historical average has likely changed, and will to continue to change, for known reasons.
I think the question is whether he would have built a new factory anyway or whether he just built a new one to have it run on solar. If he would have built it anyway but has converted the plans to make it greener, then great! If he's demolished a perfectly good one to build this one, then it is greenwashing at it's most reprehensible.
For their first facility, they took a derelict plant from a former joint venture between two other automakers and rebuilt it (and with much more efficient, low-impact processes than most). The next phase in growth required a unique approach that wouldn't work in any existing facilities - the scale alone precludes it.
Just like buying a car: if you were going to buy a new one anyway, by all means choose an Eco model, but don't scrap your old car just to upgrade.
Couldn't agree more.
I'm not trying to talk everyone here into buying a Tesla, nor am I about to do so myself, but a lot of the snark toward them seems to be based on fundamental misconceptions of the company's charter. Feel free to disagree with their strategy or methods, but it's an established fact
that profiting from high-end luxury EVs is a means to an end, with the end being mass production of low-impact, affordable cars to replace today's gas engines. I do strongly support EV adoption, and they've done a lot to make other car manufacturers take the idea seriously, which is good for all of us in the long run.