Samsung should stop for a moment

Hungary is set to emerge as the leading tier 1 battery producer in Europe this decade as the world’s top battery makers invest $13 billion to set up gigafactories, drawn by the nation’s more affordable costs and to be closer home to key customers. Tier 1 battery producers, including CATL and SK Innovation (SKI), are ramping up battery expansion plans in the country to meet demand from Europe’s automakers. The country’s battery capacity pipeline is set to grow sevenfold to reach 207 gigawatt hours (GWh) by the end of 2031, from 27.5 GWh in 2021, according to Benchmark Gigafactory Assessment. Over 175 GWh, or 86%, of this capacity is set to come from tier 1 battery producers, more than any other country in Europe (

Samsung is one of those battery producers, operating a large scale factory near Budapest, in the small town of Göd near the River Danube, north of the Hungarian capitol. Both during construction and operation, there have been a number of citizen critiques about the environmental performance of the facility and even polluting spills were detected outside the factory premises lately. The local environmental NGO Göd-ÉRT filed a lawsuit against the IPPC permit of the factory issues in December 2023. In the court action, the NGO asked for a premilinary injunction.

The Court has just last week decided and to the surprise of many, granted the preliminary injunctive relief which means that the facility should stop its operation (not having an environmental permit) until the legal dispute is finally settled. The NGO approached both the company and the competent environmental authority to make steps in order to enforce the judicial decision.