Vélib ': March will be refunded, Smovengo receives a new penalty

Repayment in March for Vélib 'subscribers, whose deployment has suffered serious delays, has been approved by the Syndicat Autolib' Vélib 'Métropole which has also sanctioned the Smovengo consortium again, announced Friday the Syndicate

The Union of Paris and Metropolitan Autolib 'Vélib' Métropole voted the reimbursement, already approved by the Paris Council, "in compensation for the severe disruption of service suffered," said a statement. [19659002] It is added to the repayment of the months of January and February, already voted in the past. Similarly, overtaking 30 minutes of travel, often due to computer bugs, will not be charged.

A refund form will be available on the website velib-metropole.fr in the coming days. Subscribers will have until June 30 to make their request.

The Union has also decided "the application of new penalties to Smovengo for the month of April", the company having already been fined three million euros for January, February and March. This new penalty should again amount to one million euros.

However, elected officials "noted the steady increase in the number of open stations in Paris and the Metropolis and the mobilization of Smovengo" to deploy the service.

The consortium -Smoove, an SME from Montpellier, Mobivia (Norauto, Midas), the Spanish Moventia and the Indigo- car parks, which takes over from the JCDecaux group, is the target of criticism because of the delay in the deployment of bicycles

The number of operational stations – some 500 stations at the end of March – is very far from the initial target of 700 stations on 1 January and 1400 at the end of March on Paris and the 60 adherent communes, according to the figures of the Syndicat Autolib 'Velib' Metropole Manager.

Vélib 'delay: March refunded to subscribers, opposition barrage

The repayment of the month of March for Vélib 'subscribers was voted Thursday during a council of Paris, which was an opportunity for the opposition of a shootout against the executive and the mayor of Paris Anne Hidalgo.

The elected officials voted the authorization of refund of the month of March, demanded by the ecologists, with the service of free-sharing bicycles.

This refund, already in place for January and February, must be formally approved by the Union of elected managers Autolib 'Vélib' Métropole

The balance of users who do not re-subscribe can also be refunded.

But the debate, very animated, was an opportunity for the opposition to denounce the "catastrophic management" by the Paris executive of the change of the operator of the service, passed on January 1st of JCDecaux to the consortium Smovengo, said Maud Gatel (UDI-MoDem).

"It is time to stop amateurism and take your responsa bilities, "the Parisian leader said while the president of the group Eric Aziere assured that this" fiasco would be recalled to the mayor of Paris during the next municipal ".

Anne Hidalgo" has managed the feat of weakening this Parisian symbol, "added Julie Boillot (LR), denouncing the" denial of reality, the approximations, the swaggering and the cowardice "in the management of the file.

Pointing the finger at a" total technical fiasco ", Jerome Dubus (PPCI, pro-Macron, ex-LR) denounced the city "hiding" behind the Syndicate while, majority in voice, "it makes rain and good weather."

"Stop you pass the hot potato, "he said, including Smovengo who declares himself" responsible for nothing, it's the fault of no luck, JCDecaux, the snow … ", has-it-

Deputy EELV to Transport Christophe Najdovski asserted that Vélib '"is now convalescent, even if the account there is still not ", with three months late and 450 stations open, being" less than half "forecasts.

Wednesday, March 21: it's the International Day of Forests

What if we took a little height on the occasion of the International Day of Forests, which takes place every year on March 21st? Planet, a company specializing in satellite imagery, compiled a video sequence of the 7134 images of forests it took in a single day. Thanks to a fleet of no less than 200 mini-satellites, the company has been photographing oceans, forests and various infrastructures from the atmosphere. These tools are very practical, for example, for evaluating forest area and attesting to deforestation phenomena

Compilation of 7134 images of forests covering 4 continents, captured in a single day. © Planet Labs 2018

For example, minisatellites captured these images near the Bolivian Andes. The disappearance of nearly 2,000 hectares of forest in just six months, in favor of sugar cane fields. The authors indicate that according to Mongabay, a website specializing in environmental science, it was an operation to prepare the extension of the San Buenaventura sugar refinery.

The images are striking, even for a phenomenon that has existed for decades. In its report entitled " Global Assessment of Forest Resources ", the United Nations measured between 2000 and 2010 an average annual deforestation of 13 million hectares. This represents the area of ​​Nicaragua! This frantic pace had already softened: in the 1990s, deforestation averaged 16 million hectares razed per year. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) assessed global forest resources in 2015 at 3,999 million hectares. That is 30.6% of the planet's territory

FAO has conducted forest resource assessments since 1948. One might be tempted to compare the figures for each. This is not possible. First of all because the methodology has changed in 70 years, and thankfully. Institutional, financial and technical resources have evolved to better quantify the areas and types of forest. Then the very term "forest" has changed in seven decades. What is a forest, according to the FAO?

The forest, definitions

1948. " Earth with vegetative associations dominated by trees of any size, able to produce wood or other products, to influence the climate or the water regime."

1958 Same definition to a detail added: "lands providing shelter for livestock and wildlife."

1980. "All types of vegetation where trees cover more than 10% of the soil."

1990. Developed countries: "Ecological systems with a minimum crown cover of 10%, generally associated with wild flora, fauna and natural soil conditions, and not subject to agronomic practices. 100 hectares are considered. "
Developing countries: "Crown-planted land of more than about 20% of the area; […] with trees more than 7 meters high and capable of producing wood […]." [19659005] 2005 "Land covering more than 0.5 hectares with trees greater than 5 meters and a cover of more than 10% of the canopy […]and does not include land that is predominantly agricultural or urban."

In 70 years, our relationship with the forest has changed, semantics with. From a purely productivist definition, the forest becomes an ecosystem. It is gradually understood that it contains a fragile biodiversity to defend. The next FAO assessment will take place in 2020. While it is good to take a step back to evaluate a phenomenon, it will need to be looked after very closely.

Public debate on the multi-year energy plan begins on March 15, 2018

What is the Multi-Year Energy Plan (EPP)?

Created by the Energy Transition Law of 2015 multi-year energy programs are used to predict development trajectories of the different modes of production of electricity and heat in the hexagon and in overseas departments. Investments must be in accordance with the objectives of the Act:

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40% between 1990 and 2030 and divide by four by 2050.
  • Reduce final energy consumption by 50% in 2050 compared to 2012 with an intermediate target of 20% in 2030.
  • Reduce the consumption of gas, oil and coal by 30% in 2030 compared to 2012.
  • Increase the share of energy 23% of the final gross energy consumption in 2020 and 32% in 2030. Today we are at 18%.
  • Multiply by five the amount of renewable heat and cold delivered by heat and cold by 2030.
  • Reducing the share of nuclear power in electricity generation by 2025.

What are the possible scenarios?

If the objectives are well defined, the trajectories are harder to imagine . This is why the State, which is the owner of the public debate, proposes to support the debates on two of the four scenarios developed by Transmission Network (RTE) the manager of 100,000 kilometers of high and medium voltage lines

The "Ampère" scenario examines the reduction of nuclear power in relation to the development of renewable energies. By 2035, there would still be a 46% share of nuclear power generation. This scenario predicts a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from the energy sector. © RTE

The "Volt" scenario examines the evolution of nuclear power and renewable energies according to economic opportunities. In this scenario, nuclear power remains central both in national production of electricity and export capacity, particularly to Germany, which is expected to face the shutdown of its coal plants. The scenario allows for a significant reduction of greenhouse gases. © RTE

Where are the controversies?

As since the beginning of the French nuclear program, it is the place of the atom in the French energy mix that is controversial to the point of relegating to second place the questions of production heat, insulation of buildings, conversion of the car fleet from oil to electricity. The government is responsible for this situation, which risks diverting public debate from its objectives. Nicolas Hulot indeed publicly announced last November that the goal of reducing the share of nuclear to 50% in 2025 yet enshrined in the law was not feasible and was postponed by a few years. EDF subsequently declared that it would not consider any closure (outside the Fessenheim power plant) before 2029. Finally, the two scenarios chosen for the debate are those with the least number of nuclear reactor closures (16 for Ampère, 9 for Volt horizon 2035). For the Climate Action Network (RAC) these scenarios involve leaving about twenty reactors in operation beyond fifty years, which poses security problems.

What are the objectives of the debate? public

For the National Commission for Public Debate (CNDP) there are four:

  • To inform the public about energy projects and issues.
  • To allow the expression of various actors: elected representatives, institutions, unions, associations, NGOs, consumers, residents
  • Enabling everyone to take cognizance of each other's positions and arguments
  • Enlighten the State by providing new ideas or reflections

What are the tools of public debate?

The National Commission of Public Debate will use all the consultation tools invented over the last twenty years

Meetings will be organized in all regions, with specific focus on territories with positive energy metropolises, rural territories. Meetings with target audiences: young people, consumers, businesses, artisans and traders, precarious energy are planned.

Finally an innovation: the G400. 400 people will be drawn from 15 March. These "ordinary citizens" will be kept informed of the exchanges. In June, they will have to decide on the topics that generated the most discussions.

Will the opinion of the citizens be listened to?

The government assures it: the definitive EPP will only be drafted in the second half of 2018 and will incorporate the contributions of the public debate. It has already happened that citizen proposals have modified projects. This is the case of Cigeo radioactive waste landfill center where the 17-person novice panel on the issue had imposed a pre-industrial phase on the National Agency for Radioactive Waste Management (Andra). she had not planned.

A Biodiversity Plan 2018-2024 is announced for March by the City of Paris

A new Plan Biodiversity 2018-2024 to preserve the fauna and flora of the French capital announced by the Mayor of Paris will be born in March. The plan will be debated in Paris Council in mid-March after extensive consultation of associations and elected officials. It will be divided into 30 actions aimed at " making Paris an exemplary city " in terms of preservation and development of biodiversity as well as sensitization of inhabitants. Among the major objectives: to increase the share of "permeable surfaces" outside buildings in the city from 30 to 50%, in this case to make the pavement and pavement surface, now covered with bitumen, appear again. Fifteen other concrete initiatives will be announced in March. The mayor of Paris has " a moral obligation, in terms of climate, to prevent biodiversity " said in front of the press Pénélope Komitès, Deputy Green Spaces of the Mayor PS Paris Anne Hidalgo .

Gaining biodiversity

The two large woods, the canals, embankments and cemeteries give the city of Paris a reservoir of biodiversity covering 16% of the territory. However, the city faces the scarcity of urban species, such as the emblematic sparrow which three out of four individuals have disappeared in 13 years, according to P. Komitès In addition to some gardens or wetlands creations, esplanade Saint-Louis in front of the Château de Vincennes in the 12th arrondissement should see its central part converted into a "meadow" (now converted into an unused parking lot).

In addition, l a mayor of Paris has launched a call for projects February 28 for the protection and development of biodiversity, open until March 23, 2018.