Extreme weather patterns such as droughts, heatwaves, and excessive rainfall are threatening the future of fragrant crop production in Grasse, close to the French Riviera, where a microclimate that allows fields of may rose, tuberose, lavender and jasmine to blossom, and where the latter sells for a higher price than gold.
While there are hundreds of thousands of water reservoirs used by farmers across France, what has prompted angry protests by environmentalist activists, dismised as 'eco-terrorists' by France's interior minister, is the size of the latest ones and the source of the water they collect.
President Emmanuel Macron has launched a video on social media asking the public to give him their views on what French policies on climate change should be, and promising to respond to comments prompted by the invitiation this coming week, as he attends the COP 27 climate talks in Egypt.
In this particularly poor area of south-east Pakistan, several towns and villages are still under water nearly three months after the monsoon rains this summer which caused widespread and massive flooding. As Mediapart's Nejma Brahim reports from the province, poverty and illness are rife among those left homeless, some of whom feel abandoned to their fate.
France is grappling with the consequences of a series of successive heatwaves this summer, aggravated by record drought conditions which began in winter, leading to massive wildfires, a fall in energy production, and tumbling crop yields. While weather predictions suggest this autumn will see notably violent storms, these are expected to have little effect on the refilling of phreatic zones. Mediapart turned to French hydrologist Emma Haziza to explore what must change to ensure the future supply and protection of water.
Concrete is the second most consumed product on the planet after water and its environmental impact is huge. As the climate crisis unfolds, major companies in the sector in France and around the world have made repeated promises that they will achieve carbon neutrality. But as Floriane Louison reports, so far this 'greenwashing' has produced very few effective solutions.
In its public utterances France's portal service La Poste makes great play of its “carbon neutrality”. Yet an analysis shows that over the last decade and a half the publicly-owned postal group has been emitting more and more carbon dioxide each year transporting letters and parcels. The reason for this is the operator's complete reliance on using the most polluting forms of transport – air and road – to carry the mail. Mediapart's environment correspondent Jade Lindgaard reports.
He has not spoken about it publicly. But behind the scenes the French head of state Emmanuel Macron has written to the president of Uganda supporting the role of French oil firm Total in developing an oilfield and a lengthy new oil pipeline in the East African country. In the capital Kampala, meanwhile, the French embassy has been wholeheartedly lobbying for the French multinational. Yet the projects are opposed by environmental and human rights groups who say they are not just bad for the climate but will also displace thousands of local people from their land. Mediapart's environment correspondent Jade Lindgaard reports.
The International Union for Conservation of Nature, which is currently holding its annual conference at Marseille in the south of France, has hit the headlines for its latest update on the number of animal species which face imminent extinction on the planet. But there are some experts who query whether the NGO's conserving strategy of preserving species in designated areas such as natural parks is the right one. Mediapart spoke with French geographer Estienne Rodary who argues that this modernist and colonial approach to the environment has become outdated in an inter-connected world. He says that the issues of biodiversity and climate change are interlinked and that when it comes to conserving nature the “carbon cost” of any policies needs to be taken into account. Amélie Poinssot reports.
In a case brought before it by a low-lying northern coastal town, France's Council of State, the country's highest administrative court, has ruled the government has nine months to meet its pledges on addressing climate change or face hefty fines.
The French lower house, the National Assembly, on Tuesday approved draft legislation on new measures to tackle climate change, including bans on some domestic flights and the creation of a new 'ecocide' crime to punish polluters, before the bill, which Greenpeace called 'a lost opportunity', goes to the Senate.
President Emmanuel Macron has announced plans to hold a referendum in France on whether the issues of battling climate change and protection of the environment should be included in the country's constitution.
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