Tesla has reached a settlement agreement to pay $275,000 to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for violating the federal Clean Air Act as its vehicle assembly plant in Fremont, California.
The penalty is next to nothing for the electric vehicle and clean energy company, as it reported $2.32 billion net income in the fourth quarter of last year alone.
According to EPA, Tesla violated specific regulations known as National Emissions Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants for Surface Coating of Automobiles from October 2016 through September 2019. The hazardous air pollutants could put people living in communities nearby at a health and environmental risk.
Tesla facility used coating materials that contain pollutants such as formaldehyde, ethylbenzene, naphthalene, and xylene. Based on EPA reports Tesla failed to “develop and/or implement a work practice plan to minimize hazardous air-pollutants emissions from the storage and mixing of materials used in vehicle-coating operations.”
Tesla which claims itself a “sustainable company” failed to comply with management requirements of its coating operations and keep legally required records with its hazardous air-pollutants emission rates, according to the EPA announcement.