Climate change groups call renewables bill ‘disappointing’ – Liberation

NGOs campaigning for climate and biodiversity believe that the text voted in the National Assembly on Tuesday to boost the deployment of renewable energies allows for progress, but still contains dubious points.

In 2022, observation has forced itself on everyone, the energy crisis is forcing. Difficulties in gas supplies caused by the war in Ukraine and the unavailability of a large part of France’s nuclear fleet have exposed France’s weaknesses. Therefore, the country finally decided to massively develop renewable energy sources. A click welcomed by environmental associations, which have long called for the activation of this important lever in the fight against climate change. The government hopes to catch up with the passage of the Renewable Energy Acceleration Bill (ENR) in the National Assembly on Tuesday evening. The country is the only one in the EU to miss its ten-year target of moving from 10% to 23% renewable energy, and has had to pay €500m to catch up.

But the way the government is proposing to redouble its efforts does not meet the consensus. The text, which was voted on in the first reading in the National Assembly and must be approved by a joint committee between deputies and senators, has already been judged. “disappointing” and not enough to mark a real turning point by the Climate Action Network.

Roofs without panels

In a press release, a group of NGOs lamented that the commitment to install photovoltaic panels, for example, did not go far enough. Only applies to outdoor car parks of more than 1500 m². Always better than the originally planned 2500 m², but many associations asked for a commitment of 250 m² or 500 m² and also wanted to cover the roofs of supermarkets and warehouses. “The draft law does not solve the problem of existing buildings, which have a large enough potential and prevent the creation of parks in natural, agricultural and forest areas, as it is now.”, France regrets the Natural Environment. According to his press release, it is a bill “There is still a lot to improve”.

The network of local associations also cautions that the renewable energy “accelerator zones” facility, which allows mayors to identify priority installation zones, is increasing delays rather than shortening them. The RAC notes a complicated process that would require going back and forth with the authorities and could take years. Like WWF and Greenpeace, the FNE believes that spatial planning can prove its worth “counterproductive”, especially for onshore wind power, and laments that as a bonus these accelerator zones are not subject to environmental assessment or public inquiry.

Focus on biodiversity

NGOs also warned that the simplification of procedures and the promotion of renewable energies should not be done at the expense of biodiversity. WWF notes that a “acceleration failed”, for example, regrets that renewable energy sources can be used in heavily protected areas (in the heart of national parks, nature reserves, biological reserves, etc.). On the other hand, the establishment of ENR and biodiversity observatory for scientific monitoring of the project’s effects was unanimously welcomed. “For this observatory to function properly, financial and human resources should be allocated to it”but FNE nuance.

The LPO, for its part, is against it “Any ENR installation, both low carbon and hydrogen, must be considered a ‘Reason of Important Public Interest (RIIPM)’.”Yes “allows to benefit from derogations from obligations to protect protected animal and plant species and their habitat”. The Robin des Bois Association also condemns it “pass” and metaphor file“Journey to the National Assembly” with a bill “simplifies code of conduct with focus on biodiversity”.

Associations still hope to make improvements to the text. By the end of the month, it must go to the joint joint committee (CMP), where MPs and senators will try to agree on a final version. Given the marked differences between the text adopted by the first and the text voted by the seconds, what is not achieved.

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