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Select Portugal for Tesla’s New GigaFactory: Open Letter to Elon Musk

This petition had 4,690 supporters


In view of the fight against offshore and onshore oil and gas drilling, I have written an open letter to Elon Musk, CEO and founder of Tesla Motors and its innovating technologies.

I am inviting you to co-sign my letter which I intend sending to him early in the new year.

If we can convince Elon Musk to locate his new Tesla Giga Factory in Portugal, it will greatly assist all of us in our fight against oil and gas drilling. Currently we are competing with Spain (they already have a petition with over 25,000 signatures), I am of the opinion that we can do better than that. We are also competing with not only Spain, but also with France, Holland and some Eastern Block countries.

Join me if you agree to the letter by co-signing your name in the petition.

 

LETTER

Elon Reeve Musk
CEO
Tesla Motors (Headquarters)
3500 Deer Creek Road
Palo Alto, CA 94304
United States of America

 

Dear Elon Musk

Today I’m writing to you as a fellow South African and as the CEO of the Portuguese Association - ASMAA - Algarve Surf and Marine Activities Association (The first association that brought awareness about offshore and onshore oil & gas drilling risks and has been continuously and actively involved at grass-roots in the Algarve).

I am a Luso-South African now living in the beautiful Portuguese region of the Algarve, but I am also a grandmother, an eco-technology lover, an environmentalist, an ex-South African oil industry senior technical project manager turned anti-fossil fuels activist - that has been successfully fighting proposed onshore and offshore oil and gas drilling projects in the Algarve (south of Portugal) for the past 5 years.

I have been following your clean energy projects for years, and am fascinated and awestruck by your SolarCity, Tesla, Open AI and SpaceX projects, so it is understandable that in view of your latest planned expansion into Europe that I personally would love to see your Tesla Giga Factory located within Portuguese borders.

I truly believe that Portugal offers a perfect choice of locations for your proposed new Tesla Giga-factory - in fact you are spoiled for choices – personally, I recommend that you assess both the Alentejo and the Algarve regions before reaching a decision.

But there are many more reasons than just location, as to why Portugal is the perfect choice in my humble opinion.

Here are some of them:

  • Portugal features several world-class seaports with extensive experience and infrastructure to export cars to Europe and elsewhere, as well as international airports in Lisbon (central), Porto (north), Faro (Algarve) and Beja (Alentejo).
  • Opportunity for Tesla to supplement the Portuguese electricity grid. About 50% electricity consumption in Portugal comes from renewable sources. Tesla will be well positioned to resell or to stock hold extra capacity in the national grid.
  • It has a mature automotive supply chain, which according to the Car Manufacturers Association of Portugal (AFIA) in 2015 had over 200 active automotive part suppliers in Portugal, from plastic mold manufacturers to electronics and cabling, led by companies such as Continental, Delphi, Visteon, Renault, Nissan and Bosch.
  • The Algarve sunny weather offers over 300 days of sunshine per year. This means that our country and the Algarve region specially, is one of the best locations for solar energy generation in the entire European Union – one of the key selection criteria for the Tesla Giga factory.
  • Regarding manpower resources, Portugal has extensive technical skills and competencies, with over 20.000 engineering and science graduates/year, and over 100.000 students in professional trades training schools, not to mention that it also has the cheapest labour costs in Western Europe.
  • Portugal has an especially good and business friendly environment for large innovation projects. In fact, the Portuguese government is keen to transform Portugal into a high-tech heaven for startups and high-tech companies and is busy implementing farsighted policies such as those required to support the development of self-driving cars, drones and robotics.
  • Portugal also has the 5th biggest lithium reserves in the World and is the leader producing country in the EU according to United States Geological Survey research published in 2015. Resulting that as Europe’s biggest producer –  Tesla can rely on a speedy and continuous supply of critical raw materials.

The above list is not exhaustive, I invite you to ask any questions or to request further information which we will gladly provide. We invite you and your team to engage with us, and with other think alike colleagues spread all over Portugal that are as excited as I am about your projects.

Finally, I want you to know that should your decision be favourable to Portugal, and you do decide to located Tesla’s Giga Factory here in our country, that it will greatly assist us in our fight against the old fossil fuel industry and its pursue to turn Portugal into a polluting oil and gas country at this dying stage of the fossil fuel industry. Another great motivation, in my opinion.

As an anti-fossil fuels activist, concerned grandmother and nature lover- supported by all that have co-signed this open letter to you - I believe that we all have a joint responsibility to preserve our planet for future generations, and that locating Tesla’s Giga Factory in Portugal will greatly assist in reaching our goals.

I’m counting on you to help us meet this vision. We all are!

Kind regards and best wishes from Portugal

Laurinda Seabra
ASMAA CEO

 

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