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"We must be more ambitious, inventive and united than ever."

"We must be more ambitious, inventive and united than ever."

Published on November 17, 2017
Minister for Ecological and Solidary Transition, Nicolas Hulot, describes new and more ambitious objectives for energy and climate transition.

spip_logoSince COP21, France has become the guardian of a universal responsibility: the fight against climate change. As climate change disrupts the lives of the poorest and most vulnerable people across the planet, our resolve remains unshaken: we must ramp up our efforts to ensure that energy and climate transition is successful. We must be more ambitious, more inventive, and more united than ever before.

It is the aim of this climate plan, which has been drawn up at the request of the French President and Prime Minister, to mobilize the whole government to make the content of the Paris Agreement a reality for French citizens, for Europe and for our diplomatic initiatives.

This climate plan is based on two essential elements: ambition and unity.

We want to exceed our objectives, to go further and faster. This ambition is reflected in new objectives for France. We believe the planned goal of reducing our country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 75% was not sufficiently ambitious to meet the objectives of the Paris Agreement. That is why we are now aiming for carbon neutrality by 2050. Today, we have the means to meet these objectives. Developments in renewable energy are gaining pace, the electric vehicle market is booming, and we now know how to build or renovate homes so that they consume little to no energy.

Our ambition is also to emphasize that fossil fuels belong in the 19th and 20th centuries. It is for this reason that the climate plan will ban all new prospecting for hydrocarbons on French soil, so that by around 2040 we will no longer produce this kind of fuel. We want to move in the same direction with cars, aiming to end the sale of petrol and diesel cars by 2040. The same goes for electricity production, for which we will progressively stop using coal. lt is also our ambition to put an end to deforestation, by curbing our consumption of products that contribute to the felling of tropical forests.

This ambition cannot be envisaged without a unified approach, so that every French citizen can play a part in this effort. To that end, we are going to provide help for those on lower incomes to change their vehicle or to find a way of reducing their heating bills. I am also counting on the participation of businesses, local councils and social partners in order to build our joint effort—helping us to make the Paris Agreement irreversible, and ensuring that France reaps all its benefits in terms of employment, innovation and international appeal. Finally, we will do more to protect the French population from climate risks by adopting and implementing a major plan to protect our country from climate-related disasters.

France must also continue in its role as educator and as an example of excellence on the international stage. We will work tirelessly in this role to convince the whole world that the Paris Agreement is in everybody’s best interests. We will continue to mobilize companies, local governments, development banks and international institutions in order to build on each and every one of the initiatives launched during COP21, whether it be the International Solar Alliance, the African Renewable Energy Initiative, or the protection of victims of extreme climatic events.

This climate plan belongs to every French citizen. The French people will be involved in its progress; they will have the opportunity to take part in the first participatory budgeting session for climate change, and thus express their opinions on the policies being implemented. lt will be part of the wide-ranging investment plan announced by Emmanuel Macron, in which ecological transition will be a priority.

The Paris Agreement is for everyone: this is our mission, and this is our vision. Because we only have one planet, we have one plan.

Nicolas Hulot,Ministre d’État
Ministry for Ecological and Solidary Transition

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