Swedish EV maker Northvolt was forced to temporarily shut down the site of a controversial battery plant near Montreal this week after sabotage and a potential court injunction from a local environment group.The Centre québécois du droit de l'environnement (CQDE), appeared in front of a Quebec Superior Court judge on Wednesday to argue that the city of Saint-Basile-le-Grand, east of Montreal, lacked the authority to allow clear cutting of wetland trees to make way for the Northvolt plant. .The $7 billion plant received more than $2 billion in subsidies from the federal and provincial governments when it was announced last fall. At the time Quebec Premier François Legault and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau praised the factory as an essential driver toward the production of electric car batteries in Canada.Almost immediately public opposition sprung up after the company said it would chop down tens of thousands of trees to make way for construction.Then on Tuesday, Northvolt said the site was sabotaged after unknown trespassers inserted nails and metal bars into 100 trees on the 170-hectare site..In a statement, the company said such tactics can carry "significant risks for the safety of workers and surrounding communities."The CBC reported an anonymous group claimed responsibility on an anarchist website, saying the motive was to protest what it says will destroy woods and wetlands and “perpetuate car culture.”"Today, we call for a broad mobilization against the destructive project of the Northvolt mega-factory. We must attack this machine that grinds up the living by targeting its weak points," they wrote on the Montreal Counter-Information website.The group says are 142 species of birds that frequent the site and singles out Legault for aiming “to transform the St. Lawrence Lowlands into a kind of Quebec Silicon Valley.”“One of Montéregie’s last natural environments is in jeopardy! The planned construction of the Northvolt battery plant in Saint-Basile-le-Grand is an ecocidal disgrace.” So-called ‘spiking’ was first used in the early 1980s to prevent the felling of redwoods in the US Pacific Northwest, and was popularized by the book Ecodefense: A Field Guide to Monkeywrenching.The method was also used against the clear-cutting of primary forests in Clayoquot, BC in the summer of 1993, the largest act of civil disobedience in Canadian history.Federal Innovation Minister François-Philippe Champagne dismissed the campaign as "completely unacceptable.""In a free and democratic society, people have the right to express themselves," he said in Montreal, adding that "if people have objections to make, there are other ways to do it."Northvolt is touting the plant as the largest private investment in Quebec’s history. A decision on the injunction is expected in next week.