At La Mede Total's biorefinery will fuel palm oil

The French oil group plans to commission the Mède biorefinery in the Bouches-du-Rhône in the summer of 2018. According to a document from the Bouches-du-Rhône prefecture, Greenpeace and the Friends of the Earth, " the oil supply plan of the establishment is, as a first approach, thus constituted: 100 kilotonnes a year of used edible oils or animal fats ", " 100 kilotonnes per year of acid products derived from the refining of vegetable oils " – from palm oil according to the document – and " 450 kilotonnes per annum of crude palm oil ". [19659002] Government Inconsistency

These environmental groups are worried about this supply of palm oil, the production of which in Malaysia and Indonesia causes deforestation weakening the ecosystem threatening the rhinoceroses, orangutans and ti and affecting local populations. In the face of criticism, Total is committed to supplying itself with "certified" palm oils, according to this document. These certification systems, however, are considered insufficient by NGOs and industrialists. Total said earlier that it wants to use 60 to 70% of vegetable oils, palm oil but also rapeseed, soya or sunflower and 30 40% used edible oils and residual oils. " The project, which will boost French palm oil imports by 64%, demonstrates the total incoherence of the French government ", denounced Thursday, April 19, 2018 Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth ] in a joint statement

The Minister of Ecological Transition, Nicolas Hulot wants to stop the importation of forest or agricultural products contributing to deforestation around the world. According to Sylvain Angerand, Friends of the Earth, " the next few weeks are decisive because Europe is revising its agrofuel support policy ". MEPs voted in January 2018 for a gradual phasing out of palm oil in biofuels by 2021. This vote, which is not binding, is to be negotiated with the European Council and the Commission. The use of palm oil in sectors such as food or cosmetics has already decreased in Europe, but it has increased in the field of biofuels. Total launched in 2015 a project to transform the refinery at La Mède, which was then in deficit. The group has stopped refining crude oil and converted it at the cost of an investment of 275 million euros, including installing an oil depot, a solar farm, a training center and this bio-refinery. 19659005]

Total's bio-refinery at La Mède will be doped with palm oil, denounce NGOs

Total's bio-refinery in La Mede will consume 550,000 tons of palm oil a year, "bouncing French imports" of this decried oil, NGOs denounced Thursday, while the government wants to fight against deforestation Imported.

The French oil group plans to commission this bio-refinery this summer.

According to a document from the prefecture of Bouches-du-Rhône that Greenpeace and the Friends of the Earth obtained, "the oil supply plan of the establishment is, as a first approach, thus constituted: 100 kilotonnes per year of used edible oils or animal fats "," 100 kilotons per year of acid products derived from the refining of vegetable oils "- palm oil according to the document – and" 450 kilotonnes per year of palm palms. "

These environmental groups are concerned about the supply of palm oil, whose production in Malaysia and Indonesia is leading to deforestation that weakens the ecosystem, threatening rhinos, orangutans and tigers. and affecting local populations

In the face of criticism, Total is committed to supplying itself with "certified" palm oil, according to this document. These certification systems are, however, considered insufficient by NGOs and industrialists.

Total said previously wanting to use 60 to 70% of vegetable oils, palm oil but also rapeseed, soya or sunflower and 30 to 40% of used edible oils and residual oils.

"The project, which will boost French imports of palm oil by 64%, demonstrates the total inconsistency of the French government," denounce Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth in a joint statement.

The Minister of Ecological Transition, Nicolas Hulot, wants to stop the importation of forest or agricultural products contributing to deforestation around the world.

According to Sylvain Angerand, Friends of the Earth, "the next few weeks are decisive because Europe is revising its biofuel support policy. "

MEPs voted in January for a gradual phasing out of palm oil in biofuels by 2021. This vote, which is not binding, must be negotiated with the European Council and the Commission

The use of palm oil in sectors such as food or cosmetics has already decreased in Europe , but it has increased in the field of biofuels.

Total had launched in 2015 a project for the transformation of its La Mède refinery, which was then in deficit. The group has stopped refining crude oil and converted it at the cost of an investment of 275 million euros, including installing an oil depot, a solar farm, a training center and this bio-refinery. 19659013]

Canada: Oil pipeline causes unprecedented crisis for Justin Trudeau

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau finds himself forced to change at the last minute a busy international agenda to try to resolve a political crisis related to oil, which his country is a major producer.

He will have to return to Ottawa Sunday between the Summit of the Americas that ends Saturday in Peru and a tour of France and the United Kingdom that begins Monday.

The expansion of a pipeline to the Pacific, authorized by the Canadian government, is at the origin of this crisis. The US proponent of the project threatens to abandon it because of fierce opposition from the province of British Columbia.

It is a blow for the Prime Minister who is particularly fond of this Trans Mountain pipeline whose objective is to triple the oil sands production capacity from the Province of Alberta to the Port of Vancouver from 300,000 to 890,000 barrels a day.

The $ 7.4 billion project Canadian dollars (4.8 billion euros) of the US group Kinder Morgan is currently the only short-term allow the oil industry in Alberta, the third reserve of black gold planet, to sell its growing production while the Canadian pipeline system is saturated.

But British Columbia, from where this oil should be loaded on ships to Asia, is staunchly opposed and intends to take the case to court again. , supported by a coalition of ecologists and indigenous communities.

 March against the Trans Mountain pipeline of Kinder Morgan, a US company in Burnaby, British Columbia, on March 10, 2018 (AFP / Archives - Jason Redmond )

March against the Trans Mountain pipeline of Kinder Morgan, a US company in Burnaby, British Columbia, on March 10, 2018 (AFP / Archives – Jason Redmond)

return this neighboring province of economic reprisals "very aggressive"

M. Trudeau to receive premiers of both provinces in Ottawa Sunday "to discuss next steps to advance the pipeline project," tweeted Cameron Ahmad, his spokesperson.

Fearing further delays in this authorized project in 2016, Kinder Morgan suspended the expansion on Sunday, calling for "clarity" for future events, and in particular "the possibility of doing work in British Columbia."

The American Group gave himself until May 31 to get along with "the different parties" in this file and "allow the project to move forward."

– More gas? –

The refusal of British Columbia, which fears that an accident will pollute its majestic coasts, has triggered the ire of the Government of Alberta, which depends on the exploitation of oil and is lacking oil pipelines to expand production

The Canadian oil industry is struggling to build new pipelines, particularly to the eastern provinces (Ontario, Quebec and the Maritime Provinces). In their absence, Canada, seventh largest producer of black gold in the world with a capacity of 3.9 million barrels a day, is forced to import from abroad 670,000 barrels per day to serve these regions, noted this week the National Energy Board.

After boycotting BC wine this winter and ceasing to buy electricity, Alberta threatens to introduce a bill Monday to cut off gasoline supplies.

The Federal Government being the only authority to authorize an oil pipeline between two provinces, Justin Trudeau called on British Columbia to "stop its obstruction" of this "project of national interest."

Ottawa and Alberta are also considering taking a stake in pipeline to reassure Kinder Morgan investors.

After rejecting a year and a half ago another pipeline supposed to connect Alberta to the coast of British Columbia, Mr. Trudeau defends this time the Expansion of Trans Mountain and insists that the economy and the protection of the environment can go hand in hand.

This position poses risks for him in view of the parliamentary elections of October 2019: he was elected on the promise e to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, one-quarter of which come from oil sands operations in Alberta

But British Columbia is one of three provinces, with Ontario and Quebec, having elected the most members of the party of Justin Trudeau in 2015, while Alberta has only three of the 183 Liberals in the House.

The situation is more perilous for the Prime Minister from British Columbia, John Horgan, who came to power last year while campaigning against the pipeline. The survival of his minority government depends on the support of three Green elected officials, who are very hostile to the project.

Wellington will no longer allow new offshore oil and gas exploration

New Zealand will forgo any new offshore oil and gas exploration to combat global warming, the government said, which the opposition immediately accused of "economic vandalism."

"We take an important step to tackle climate change and create a clean, green and sustainable future for New Zealand, "said Premier Jacinda Ardern (center left).

New Zealand's Oil and Gas Industry annually generates $ 2.5 billion New Zealand (€ 1.4 billion), of which $ 1.5 billion for exports alone. It employs 11,000 people.

Ms. Ardern made it clear that this decision did not concern exploration and drilling permits already granted, so that no current job would be affected.

She also announced a limitation on new inshore permits that would be granted in the Taranaki region of the North Island, where the New Zealand oil and gas sector is concentrated

"We are striving for the right balance for New Zealand. protect an existing sector and protect global warming for future generations, "she said.

Last year's environmental issues were at the heart of Mrs. Ardern's campaign, which formed a coalition with Greens.

She said she witnessed the impacts of global warming by visiting Samoa and Tonga last month, which were recently hit by a violent cyclone.

believed that New Zealand needed to be at the forefront of the fight against global warming.

"We have been world leaders on important topics, standing apart from nuclear, being the first to supporting the right to vote for women, "she said,"

"Now we could be a world leader in offsetting carbon emissions. We owe it to future generations. "

The government said there were currently 31 permits for oil and gas exploration, including 22 offshore

Environmental groups welcomed the New Zealand decision, Greenpeace claiming in particular: "The trend has irretrievably returned to the Supermajors in New Zealand."

"This is a big step forward for New Zealand and a turning point in the transition to a clean energy economy. said New Zealand's WWF director Livia Esterhazy,

But the conservative National Party opposition accused Mrs. Ardern of "economic vandalism" that could put thousands of jobs at risk.

Jonathan Young, MP, said the gas contributes to the country's energy independence and noted that the government's decision meant that New Zealand should within 10 years importing much more polluting resources like coal when gas reserves are exhausted.

To save the orang-utan, the industry must produce a more sustainable palm oil

Hardening the certification standards of sustainable palm oil, today too "weak", to better protect the orang-utan, argues Marc Ancrenaz, specialist of this great ape of Asia in critical danger

This French veterinarian has been based in Sabah since 1998, one of the two Malaysian states on the island of Borneo, where he runs the NGO Hutan.

The number of these primates has decreased half since 1999 on the island of Borneo, according to researchers. There would remain between 70,000 and 100,000. Two other species live on the Indonesian island of Sumatra and their situation is also critical.

"The current population decline is much faster than we thought", alarmed Marc Ancrenaz in an interview with AFP in Paris

Orangutans suffer from the disappearance of their natural habitat, the forest, destroyed to give way to palm groves or mines, and hunting.

"Orangutans suffer Outan needs the forest to survive, "says the scientist. The monkey spends a lot of time in the trees.

 An orangutan female and her cub at the Sandakan Monkey Sanctuary, on the island of Borneo, February 6, 2013 (AFP - MOHD RASFAN)

An orangutan female and her cub at the Sandakan Monkey Sanctuary on the island of Borneo, 6 February 2013 (AFP – MOHD RASFAN)

In Sabah, 28% of the territory is protected and 75% of orang- live in these territories, reports Marc Ancrenaz. But "on Borneo we think that 75% of the current populations live outside the protected areas," he says. "It is also necessary to deal with these populations."

Hence the need, according to the scientist, to work with the palm oil industry, despite the recurrent criticisms of NGOs for its role in massive deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia.

According to the WWF, the exploitation of this oil, used as much in the food industry as in biofuels or cosmetics, would be responsible for 90% of deforestation in Indonesia and Malaysia. This figure is disputed by researchers who point to other agricultural activities.

– "Being pragmatic" –

"I try to be pragmatic", recognizes the primatologist. He considers ineffective the creation of protected areas isolated from each other – "we would create zoos" – and illusory to count on a stop of the agricultural development.

"All is not pink, some industrialists play the game, some do not care, others are very bad, "he says. But some "want to get things done."

One of the keys is to strengthen RSPO's "sustainable" palm oil certification standards (Roundtable for Sustainable Palm Oil). In 2004, producers, manufacturers, distributors and NGOs created this association to reduce the impact on the environment, save primary forests or respect the rights of workers and local communities. Its NGO has been part of it since 2013, alongside WWF or Oxfam International.

Today, certified palm oil represents 25% of the market, according to the French alliance for sustainable palm oil, which includes industrials such as Ferrero, Unilever or Nestlé.

"Some manufacturers (…) go further than the RSPO because today the RSPO is too weak," says Marc Ancrenaz.

" We are trying to improve the RSPO criteria "which must be revised in 2018, confirms a spokesman for the French alliance for sustainable palm oil. This standard, for example, does not prohibit the use of the pesticide paraquat, banned in Europe for its dangerousness.

The Indonesian government, on the contrary, would push the European Union, which consumes 80% of sustainable palm oil, abandoning the application of strict environmental standards for this industry.

To protect orang-utans, Marc Ancrenaz pleads for "protected areas connected by corridors" with buffer zones, coupled with areas of forests scattered throughout the country. landscape and plantations to allow animals to circulate.

"Key biodiversity areas must be authenticated" and "forest cover in plantations" strengthened, he says. "Ideally, at least 10 to 20 per cent of the forest should be in agricultural areas, and currently it is 2 per cent."