Farmers, hunters, skiers, breeders or elected officials on the lines of this Tuesday, January 24 demonstration explain their opposition to Têt’s new stock flow. Demonstrators’ words.
“I give up my life, my father’s work“
Simon, shepherd in Thuir: “Part of the farm, at pasture level, is irrigated. It should be half of 150 hectares. For me, the biggest risk of this court decision is the reduction of water volume in the Perpignan canal. This means that there is not enough water for the animals. In these cases I would have only two solutions. I might have to cut the flock in half, I have a hundred sheep right now. But I could also be forced to change animals. Sheep graze around the barn. If I don’t get enough water in these areas, there won’t be enough grass to feed them. Therefore, they should be sent to other areas further away. Sheep are difficult to transport, at least less so than cows. Redirection is a cost. And above all, it means giving up a job for life. My father’s, who tended the Rouge du Roussillon sheep for twenty years. An endangered species.“
“Everything in nature is connected, that’s why we are all on the street today”
Loïc, 30 years old, and Guillem, 33 years old, partner in Cases-de-Pène, are also fishermen and hunters: “Nature is an ecosystem. If this court ruling causes the farms to disappear, we will have more wilderness and therefore always more feral hogs. A farmer who has been harmed by feral pigs can challenge the hunting federation. At this time, it is the insurance of the federation that goes to the treasury. EDue to the quarantine in 2020, hunters could not train as usual. As a result, the damage caused by wild boars in my vineyard was worth 8500 euros. Again, everything in nature is interconnected. That’s why we are all on the street today“.
“We wouldn’t be able to open if we waited for the weather to rain on us”
Pierre, Safety Manager at Font Romeu Ski Slopes: “If we increase the water flow at Têt, the Boulouzes will run out of water to make artificial snow at Font-Romeu. The ski season represents 180 jobs in the resort and 3,000 jobs in the village. Without forgetting the life of the branch of the University of Perpignan. An entire city depends on this snow. We could not open this winter if we waited for the capricious climate to shower us with snow. From December 2 to 30, 25 cm of snow fell. What do you want us to do with it? This court decision is a blow to the water. All they could do was bring the farmers and the highlanders together“.
in Bolker,We are at risk of running out of drinking water…”
Henri Baudet, Mayor of Bolker: “The decision of the administrative court on increasing the reserve flow of Têt affects us in several ways. The most serious result is related to drinking water. Font-Romeu, Egat and Bolker take water from the bull lake. For the three municipalities, we should be able to take 600 thousand cubic meters per year. Now, if we had to maintain the flow of water in the river at 1500 liters per second instead of 800 liters, we calculated that the Buluz dam would be dry in the middle of August. it has the right to use it by tapping. it lowers the level of the lake by only 1 cm: it contains only 18 million cubic meters. For us, the increase in the flow of the river is not only a problem for drinking water, but also for tourism, ski resorts, fighting against fires and fish hunting.”