The oil concession of La Teste-de-Buch (Gironde) continues to be talked about. Two elected ecologists from Gironde have written to the Minister of Energy Transition, Agnès Pannier-Runacher, to ask her to block a project of eight new disputed oil drilling near Arcachon, which could see the light of day soon, while the exploitation of hydrocarbons must gradually stop in France by 2040.
Madam Minister, we solemnly ask you to oppose the authorisation of this climaticidal project, which is out of step with the country's energy objectives," wrote Bordeaux MP Nicolas Thierry and regional councillor Vital Baude in the letter, a copy of which was received by AFP on Tuesday. After a month of public inquiry, the investigating commissioner recently issued a favourable opinion on this project by the Canadian group Vermilion Energy in La Teste-de-Buch, where it holds a concession that has been in operation since the 1s until 2035 January 1960. About 1500 wells are currently producing about <>,<> barrels per day.
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"I assume that it may offend common sense"
The prefect of the Gironde must now issue an order authorising or refusing these eight new wells. The two elected officials believe that "these oil wells, installed in the heart of the national forest, would represent an additional threat to ecosystems already in danger" after the "mega-fires of the summer of 2022", which burned 7000 hectares of forests in La Teste-de-Buch. Agnès Pannier-Runacher assured RTL on Sunday that the government, which had passed a law in 2017 providing for the gradual cessation of the exploitation of hydrocarbons by 2040, had "absolutely no double discourse". "My goal and the line I will hold until the end is to minimize the last oil and gas exploitation on our territory. But I will respect the law," she added.
On Friday, during a trip to Bordeaux, the Minister of Ecological Transition, Christophe Béchu, stressed that these were not "new exploitations" but "continuation of exploitation and drilling within the framework of a given exploitation several decades ago". "I assume that it may offend common sense and at the same time, as long as we need oil, it's no worse for it to come from here than to bring it from the other side of the world by buying it from dictatorships who then use this money sometimes to support movements that fight us," he added. two days after being questioned in the Senate by former Green presidential candidate Yannick Jadot.