climate change

Seeking answers to a summer of extremes

France — Interview

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.

How 'green concrete' has failed to build an eco-revolution in France and the world


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.

French PM sees climate, health and cost of living as top priorities

France — Link

Élisabeth Borne spoke after a meeting of ministers to outline the priorities of her new government for the coming months.

How France's postal service has failed to deliver on cutting CO2 emissions

France — Investigation

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.

Macron's discreet support for climate-harming oil project in Uganda

International — Investigation

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.

Saving biodiversity 'just as crucial' as tackling climate change, says French academic

International — Interview

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.

French court gives government ultimatum on climate change action

France — Link

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.

French oil giant Total rebrands as TotalEnergies in climate push

France — Link

Total has begun to invest more in solar and wind power, but it is under pressure to do more as climate issues rise closer to the top of investors’ agendas.

Draft law on climate change wins first hurdle in French parliament

France — Link

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.

Court rules France failed to respect its climate change goal

France — Link

President Macron’s lobbying for global climate action is not backed up by sufficient domestic measures, say environmental groups.

France to hold referendum on placing environment in constitution

France — Link

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.

French climate council urges referendum on making 'ecocide' a crime

France — Link

The "ecocide" proposal topped dozens of ideas presented by the 150 randomly picked members of the Citizen's Convention on Climate, along with inscribing the fight against global warming in the French Constitution.

Macron kicks off climate measures with visit to shrinking Alps glacier

France — Link

After a government 'environmental defence council' meeting at which the French government announced a series of measures to combat climate change and protect bio-diversity, President Emmanuel Macron on Thursday visited a vast, shrinking glacier at the foot of the Mont Blanc where he said its melting 'is irrefutable proof of global warming'.

French climate change protestors join Friday's worldwide rallies

France — Link

Thousands of people joined a demonstration in Paris on Friday to demand greater political action to combat climate change, although estimates of the turnout, ranging from a police figure of 10,000 to the 30,000 claimed by organisers, were well below massive rallies held simultaneously in Germany and the US.

The dramatic melting of France's largest glacier

France — Link

The Mer de Glace  – the “sea of ice” – near the Alps’ highest summit, the Mont Blanc, has lost around 800 metres in length over the past 30 years in a stark example of the effects of global warming on the world's glaciers, the subject of a UN report due to be presented next week.