Environment – World Ocean Day (June 8, 2023)
On this World Ocean Day, France reiterates its commitment to ensuring that the oceans are at the top of the international agenda. They cover more than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface and help safeguard major environmental balances, regulate global warming and constitute invaluable biodiversity reserves.
President Macron’s commitment to protecting the oceans and marine biodiversity was a driving force in speeding up this fight internationally. Today he announced that 2025 would be the Year of the Ocean in France.
As part of the High Ambition Coalition on Biodiversity beyond National Jurisdiction (HAC BBNJ) launched by France and the EU, France has supported the goal of protecting marine spaces and their ecosystems. A historic agreement was reached on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in international waters at the fifth session of intergovernmental negotiations held at UN headquarters in New York in March 2023.
Major advances were also made on June 2 in Paris in international negotiations on a legally binding treaty to end plastic pollution, particularly in the marine environment. Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Catherine Colonna emphasized that this progress must allow for the adoption of an ambitious agreement, in order for us to meet the 2024 goal.
France pledges its support for transparent and inclusive international ocean governance and for the Regional Seas Conventions to which it is a party – among others, the Barcelona Convention for the Mediterranean and the Cartagena Convention for the Caribbean.
In 2025, France will host the next United Nations Ocean Conference in Nice, which it will co-chair with Costa Rica.
Canada – France mobilizes assistance to help fight forest fires (June 8, 2023)
In keeping with President Macron’s announcement, France is mobilizing assistance to respond to the Canadian government’s request for help with fighting devastating forest fires.
Two detachments totaling some 100 firefighters and fire-and-rescue personnel from the French Civil Protection service are leaving from Marseille today with a dozen tons of firefighting equipment to fight fires in the province of Quebec.
This solidarity-based operation, which is in line with the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, is being coordinated by the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs’ Crisis and Support Center and the Ministry of the Interior and Overseas France’s General Directorate of Civil Security and Crisis Management, in coordination with the Canadian Embassy in France.
These extreme events serve as a reminder that we must take action in view of the consequences of the intensification of climate change, which are affecting more and more people.
As Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs Catherine Colonna has said, France reiterates its absolute solidarity with the Canadian people and authorities.