Tesla opened up its gigafactory in Storey County today to the news media.
News media personnel were allowed to tour the facility with restrictions as to what they could record and photograph. Tesla spokespeople said the restrictions were in place to protect employee privacy and trade secrets. We were allowed to drive Tesla vehicles after the tour.
The media visit fell on the heels of a private visit by legislative leaders on Wednesday, with actor Leonardo DiCaprio reportedly also in attendance.
Tesla spokespeople said that the factory is at 14 percent of its anticipated capacity. It is producing battery storage for home and building use with electric auto batteries to be added to production at a later date. Spokespeople said that the factory is fossil-fuel free.
About 350 union and non-union workers walked off the site in February, protesting the use of an out-of-state contractor at the site, but Tesla representatives said the majority of personnel at the factory are from Nevada.
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Bob Conrad is publisher, editor and co-founder of This Is Reno. He has served in communications positions for various state agencies and earned a doctorate in educational leadership from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2011. In addition to managing This Is Reno, he holds a part-time appointment for the Mineral County University of Nevada Extension office.