Tesla Settles Hazardous Waste Suit Brought by 25 Counties

Electric automaker Tesla has entered into a $1.5-million legal settlement with 25 counties who sued over the improper disposal of toxic waste.

The lawsuit was filed last week by the counties of San Joaquin; Alameda; Butte; Contra Costa; Fresno; Kern; Los Angeles; Monterey; Orange; Placer; Riverside; Sacramento; San Bernardino; San Diego; San Francisco; San Luis Obispo; San Mateo; Santa Barbara; Santa Clara; Solano; Sonoma; Stanislaus; Tulare; and Ventura.

According to the lawsuit, Tesla mislabeled hazardous materials and dumped them in landfills that were not equipped to handle hazardous waste. The mishandling of materials like paint, batteries, and antifreeze allegedly occurred at 101 Tesla facilities.

The settlement was approved by a judge Thursday, two days after the suit was filed. In addition to $1.3 million in civil penalties, the company will pay $200,000 in legal costs. Tesla has also agreed to implement new training measures and hire a third-party auditor to ensure proper waste removal in the future.

"While electric vehicles may benefit the environment, the manufacturing and servicing of these vehicles still generates many harmful waste streams," San Francisco District Attorney Brooke Jenkins said in a statement.

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