Environmental activist Greta Thunberg joined a protest in southwest France on Sunday against eight oil well projects, which will theoretically be banned in the country by 2040.
The group “Stop Pétrole Bassin d’Arcachon”, which opposes oil drilling in the area around the seaside resort of Arcachon, claimed that 3,000 people were present at the demonstration, but police said it there were 1,200 of them.
“The exit from fossil fuels must begin now with the rejection of this project,” declared Natalie Hervé, spokesperson for the group.
Thunberg was in the area after making an appearance Saturday at a protest against a local highway, where on Sunday police used tear gas to clear out demonstrators who were blocking a railroad track.
The internationally renowned Swedish activist, dressed in a pink raincoat and Palestinian keffiyeh, did not speak at the anti-oil demonstration on Sunday, but danced and shouted slogans in French and English against the fossil fuel industry.
The wells would be drilled by the Canadian company Vermilion Energy, which has a concession near Arcachon until early 2035. The field has been in production since the 1960s and around 50 wells now produce a total of 1,500 barrels per year. day.
Opponents hope to block authorization for the project, which has not yet been approved.
In 2017, the French government voted to end national oil production by 2040.
At the beginning of December, the Minister of Ecological Transition Christophe Bechu declared that as long as France needs oil, it is “not so serious that it comes from here rather than from the other side of the world”.
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