France to outlaw oil and gas exploration by 2040
France has taken another bold step towards combatting climate change by passing legislation to end all oil and gas exploration and production by 2040. It will also ensure that no new exploration permits are granted within French territories from now.
President Macron’s Republic on the Move party voted in favour of the bill with help from other centrist and left-wing parties. The move was opposed by the majority of the right-wing Republican party.
While the nation isn’t a major oil producer, exploiting only 61 thousand barrels a day, the move is seen as an important signal to other nations to make the transition away from exploiting hydrocarbons.
The United States is the current leading nation for petroleum production, moving almost 15 million barrels per day, shortly followed by Saudi Arabia (12 million barrels) and Russia (11 million).
Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot commented that the legislation means "current generations can take care of future generations”. In September, he commented that the move will “allow us to progressively free ourselves…It will allow investors to go much further in their renewable investments. Currently oil and gas leave us dependent on geopolitics”.
The French President tweeted out the news.
The move is the latest in France’s bold new steps to tackle climate change since the election of President Macron earlier this year. In July, he announced the banning of petrol and diesel cars, to be enacted by 2040 as well.