CASE. “There is no worse industrial activity”: France nature hostile environment to the reopening of mines in France

CASE. “There is no worse industrial activity”: France nature hostile environment to the reopening of mines in France

Antoine Gatet est juriste spécialiste de l’environnement et président de France nature environnement. DR

The government is pushing mining projects in France, such as the Beauvoir lithium mine, in Allier. The president of France Nature Environnement, however, denounces the absence of national debate on the subject of mining resources and recalls that it is an extremely polluting industry for which we are still paying for the past.

What inspires you with the idea of ​​studying the new opening of mines in France?

It is time for us to have PEPRs of this type, in the sense that, in connection with the reform of the Mining Code, the experiences of "clean", a sector which is becoming increasingly popular. rsquo;is committed to its green revolution, we have been saying for ten years that there is a lack of a global public debate on the use of this common resource. We must never forget that these mineral resources are a common good. However, we have missed this need to debate their exploitation, in what quantities, for what to do, under what conditions, with a vision of wealth creation and growth as if we were not in full disruption climate and biodiversity crisis.

We should therefore not approach the subject project by project…

If we take the case of lithium, which is much talked about, we must decide collectively whether we exploit this resource and not whether it is appropriate to grant it to a private operator. What is the public strategy that would allow us to be sober in terms of reducing our dependence on materials and in particular on metallic materials, lithium and others? ? What are the scenarios for tomorrow's mobility, since lithium will be used 80% for car batteries, what needs will we have in relation to this and on this basis, let's look at the available resources, how we exploit them and why. There, without this debate, we will open a lithium mine in the Allier which will be used to make SUVs.

The economic course of saying: "We want to create wealth, factories, activity", we understood that well, but perhaps he was good at 1950 or in 1970. There, we have trajectories which, if we do not respect our obligations to reduce emissions, if we continue with extractivism, to degrade the environment and biodiversity, we lead to an unlivable planet. That’s just what’s at stake.

Who seriously believes that France, with its lithium mine and its battery factory, will compete with Chinese and other players ?

Are you so concerned about the environmental risks posed by a mine?

We are worried because we have experience, because we have 6,200 associations throughout the country, which today have to manage all French mining liabilities and that ;rsquo;we know the consequences of this exploitation. Even if we go to the limit of the efforts that we can make, a mine, by nature, is an element which disrupts the environments, the circulation of water, consumes astronomical quantities of chemicals, leaves waste on place. It is mainly the processing of ore, which generates chemical waste; there is no worse industrial activity.

Today, the national mining liability is deplorable, we do not have enough resources to manage it and we are told: & quot;We have to go back!" Afterward we are surprised that the local populations are in the streets and claim to no longer want that  hellip;

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