What should we remember from Emmanuel Macron’s speech to the World Conservation Congress?

It was the last highlight of his long trip to Marseille. This Friday, the President of the Republic took advantage of the opening of the World Conservation Congress to decline a series of government commitments to biodiversity, a few months away from the French presidency of the European Union … and the ‘presidential election. 20 minutes make the point.

An extension of the French protected area in the Mediterranean

This is the main announcement of the President of the Republic, which ends, by his own admission, after several discussions with the fishermen. Emmanuel Macron announced, to the applause of Parc Chanot which hosted the World Conservation Congress, to want to increase the areas benefiting from “strong protection” to 5% of its maritime space in the Mediterranean by 2027, against 0.2% currently. “This real change will allow us to reach another 10% target by 2030,” promised the Head of State.

“Strong protection” areas are areas where the pressures generated by human activities likely to compromise the conservation of ecological issues are eliminated or significantly limited, and in a sustainable manner, according to the definition of the Ministry of Ecological Transition.

An “accelerated exit from pesticides”

In the first half of 2022, France will take over the rotating presidency of the European Union. The opportunity, according to Emmanuel Macron’s statements, to “carry a strong initiative, with all colleagues, to accelerate the release of pesticides”. “It is only at the European level that we will get there, otherwise we will slow down,” he said. The President of the Republic, almost in campaign, did not however detail this measure. Emmanuel Macron had committed to getting out of glyphosate, a promise that has not yet materialized. This controversial weedkiller is therefore currently authorized in the European Union until the end of 2022.

French status quo on the EU-Mercosur agreement

Referring to the questions raised by such a text in terms of climate protection and biodiversity, Emmanuel Macron reiterated his opposition to the EU-Mercosur trade agreement. “France is against Mercosur as it is negotiated today, and we will remain so very clearly,” hammered the President of the Republic. Not because we are not at ease with our friends from Mercosur (but) because by definition, this agreement as it was conceived and thought out cannot be compatible with our climate and biodiversity agenda. “

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