This happens on BFM. Yamina Saheb, an author of the IPCC report, explains that the climate crisis is such that the activities that fuel climate change must disappear. We are on the information channel of Mr. and Mrs. Tutti, so the journalist asks them for examples of everyday life. Individual pools? Golf? The expert answered bluntly: finished. Her words cause misunderstandings on the set, but she insists: we need to reinvent our passions, “The ecological crisis requires a metamorphosis of our societies”.
Are we ready for this? After his visit, some tweeters denounced the risk of an ecological dictatorship, but the radicalism of the search is reinforced by the reality of the situation. According to its Paris Agreement commitments, between 2022 and 2030, France must reduce its CO2 emissions by 4.7% per year, while the annual rate has been only 1.7% since 2010 , according to the Superior Climate Council.
The aim of these reductions: to reach carbon neutrality by 2050, that is to say to generate an activity that does not release more CO2 than the planet can absorb. Our economic model is still far, hence the call of IPCC experts for radical changes. Also, I’m not alone. Even the prime minister Elisabeth Borne seems convinced of the urgency: last July, the one who is also responsible for ecological planning promised “radical responses”. How could I translate this? We went around the constraints that could shake our daily life.
Transport: the car in sight
Transport makes up a large quarter of France’s carbon footprint. Among the modes of transport, cars emit the most CO2. It is therefore to them that we must attack. But what limitations can we expect? Already, the end of the sale of thermal cars is registered for 2035. In addition, ten cities have banned their city centers to vehicles that emit more greenhouse gases. One can imagine going further and banning all motor vehicles.
Do you enjoy driving at 130 km/h on the highway? This speed could one day be reduced to 110 km/h. The Citizens Climate Convention (CCC) and environmental NGOs have been asking for this for a long time. You know that on a trip of 300 km, at 110 km/h, it will take an additional 25 minutes, or 15% more time.
Beyond speed, the very use of the car could be regulated and carpooling encouraged, even forced. Because yes, moving 1.2 tons of plastic and steel (average weight of a car in France) to move a single person of 81 kg (average weight of a Frenchman) is not very efficient. Courses reserved exclusively for carpoolers could be generalized.
The disappearance of domestic flights?
As for transportation, the case of private jets has recently come into full view. Left-wing MPs are proposing to ban it. Beyond the importance of the symbol they embody, jets represent only 4% of emissions from the aviation sector, which itself represents 5% of French emissions, according to data from the Ministry of the Ecological Transition for the year 2019. How to drastically reduce its impact. ? The Citizens’ Climate Convention proposed to ban the construction of any new airport. For its part, the Dutch government, at the beginning of the summer, decided to limit the number of flights at Amsterdam airport from 2023. The regulation of the sector could go even further, with a quota of flights for inhabitants and year. Are we ready for this?
Softer, the issue of taxation could be put on the table in a progressive form according to the number of flights. Another measure that will increase the price of the ticket: the end of the tax exemption on kerosene for domestic flights, as well as the end of the VAT exemption on international air tickets and the reduced rate of VAT on domestic flights.
For the moment, only domestic flights for which there was an alternative by train in less than 2h30 have been cancelled. What if the threshold was crossed at 4 or 5 o’clock? A large part of domestic flights disappeared.
Almost no meat diet
39% of emissions from the food sector come from one product: meat. What to do? “The subject is as taboo as nuclear energy, but we know the solution: reduce the French band”, explains Damien Demailly, deputy director of the Climate Economy Institute. For the remaining livestock, the ban on intensive farming is on the table. Unthinkable? Leftist candidates had already proposed it in the last presidential election.
So much for supply, what about demand? In its most ambitious scenario for compliance with carbon neutrality in 2050, Ademe recommends reducing our consumption by three. Except that without doing anything, the meat consumption of the French is gradually decreasing (-12% between 2008 and 2018). Then we have to go through restrictive measures such as days without meat in the cellars. The City of Lyon has taken a step in this direction: 26,000 meals are served every day in Lyon, and now a meat-free and fish-free menu is offered every day.
For everyday purchases, greater taxation? This device could be accompanied by a control of food, as proposed by the Climate Convention of the Citizen.
On fruits and vegetables, can we continue to eat tomatoes in January and squash in June? One can imagine the ban on selling products that are not in season, to avoid growing them in heated greenhouses during the winter or having them travel thousands of kilometers.
Accommodation: almost the end of the second houses
What if new constructions were ancient history? In order to comply with its goal of net zero artificialization of the territory, France could (still in a hypothetical future), consider the end of the issuance of construction permits for an unconfined area. At the same time, the living space would be better used to avoid vacations. Another lever of action: reduce secondary residences. Ademe projects a drastic drop, from 9% to 2.5% of the park.
The CCC proposed to stop all new development of peri-urban commercial areas that consume a lot of space and to facilitate the requisition of vacant houses and offices.
Housing renovation will also be a crucial asset. One measure has just entered into force: the ban on any rent increase for housing in energy class F or G. For Damien Demailly of the Institute of Economics for the Climate, we can go further and force renew the dwelling with each transaction of the property.
Pool or no pool?
In the houses, what about the individual pool, an abyss of water and energy? “This is one of the symbolic subjects like the golf courses, which do not really have an impact on the national budget of France, but the symbols are important, especially in a context of inequality. People want to be sure that the rich people also make an effort”adds Damien Demailly.
Less symbolic, the rate of appliances in domestic appliances. This same scenario of Ademe projects a decrease in the rate of household equipment and above all a mixture of appliances such as the washing machine. And yes, if sharing with neighbors has become the norm with a common habitat that could be developed? Less extraction of raw materials for manufacturing, less transport, less sales space.
We could list a thousand other examples that are unlikely today and that could quickly become possible as the awareness of the energy crisis increases. The whole question is whether he would be quick enough to make the necessary choices. Asked, Yamina Saheb, the author of the Giec transmitted to BFM, remains pessimistic: “People don’t understand the situation at all.”
Just look at the controversy raised every year when the municipalities, often environmentalists, choose to remove the traditional Christmas tree. The expert calls for an intellectual revolution. “Just because we’ve always been used to seeing something doesn’t mean it makes sense in our current world. You have to ask them”concludes the expert.