France commits to protecting environment as it continues to fight climate change
FRANCE — French President Emmanuel Macron announced Wednesday that his government will commit to protecting the environment and would seek to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect forests, wetlands and coastal waters from erosion and sea level rise.
Macron will unveil the new climate plan at a press conference Wednesday at the Elysee Palace in Paris, the official French news agency, Le Monde reported.
It is a broad-based plan that covers energy, transport and the environment, Macron’s office said.
Macrons administration has promised to reduce emissions from power plants, the countrys largest polluter, and build up renewable energy sources.
It has also pledged to increase the share of renewable energy in France’s electricity mix from 30 percent today to 50 percent by 2050.
Macron also pledged on Wednesday to raise taxes on the wealthy and corporations, and introduce an overhaul of France’s retirement system, according to Le Mond.
Macros plan is expected to be a major political boon for Macron, who is seeking a fourth term in 2020, and the Socialist Party of France, which is expected next year to enter a coalition with the centrist National Front, or FN, which has a history of backing Macron.
The conservative United States and Germany have both pledged to curb emissions and increase their contributions to climate change mitigation and adaptation programs.
Macerons climate plan has a wide array of economic benefits for France, as well.
“We will see more jobs and higher wages,” Macron told the press conference, as cited by the AP news agency.
“We will also see more energy independence, as we already have.
We will make the climate and energy transition the priority for all of France.
We will create the conditions for a new era of prosperity and a new world order.”
Macron said he would work with the European Union to combat climate change, as he has done in recent years, and pledged to help create a global fund to finance projects to fight global warming.
He also pledged a new “green economy,” one that will be based on renewables, a goal Macron has made central to his agenda.
He is expected in Paris on Wednesday evening to sign a new climate agreement with the EU and the United States.
The Paris climate accord was signed by 190 countries and was agreed by the U.N. General Assembly in December.
France is one of the largest emitters of greenhouse gases in the world, responsible for more than 40 percent of global emissions.