Wind power, a divisive subject of the presidential campaign

Will they succeed, as they wish, in regaining control of the debate by “Setting the record straight” and by offering a “New story” ? While renewable energies are the subject of strong criticism from various personalities, including presidential candidates, representatives of the sector expressed their concerns on Thursday, October 7. Gathered on the occasion of the annual colloquium of the Renewable Energies Union (SER), they called on political leaders to be responsible.

“The debate on energy transition and the fight against global warming is clearly very poorly launched, on the basis of untruths and disinformation, deplored Jean-Louis Bal, president of the SER. Renewable energies have become an eminently political object and are victims of an often caricatured instrumentalisation. ”

As in the regional elections in June, the energy issue has already emerged as one of the divisive subjects of the campaign. Candidates, particularly from the right and the far right, have reaffirmed in recent weeks their opposition to renewables, and in particular to wind power. This is the case of Xavier Bertrand, the president (ex-Les Républicains, LR) of Hauts-de-France, who accuses the wind turbines of disrupting ” people’s life “, from “Cost a lot of money”, to develop in a “Anarchic” or “To massacre landscapes”. “Wind power, there are enough”, he insisted on Monday.

Read also: The RN tries to capture the resentment of part of the population against the wind turbines

Other candidates of the right, the former European Commissioner Michel Barnier expressed his “Skepticism” on this technology and the Alpes-Maritimes MP Eric Ciotti supported, in 2020, a bill to end the “Forced development of wind farms, imposed against citizens”.

Marine Le Pen goes even further. After calling for a moratorium on wind turbines in 2017, the candidate of the National Rally (RN) now promises to dismantle some parks. “Elected president, I will immediately deconstruct wind farms on land and at sea and eliminate all subsidies for wind power”, she wrote. Like Xavier Bertrand, who pleads to launch the construction of new reactors in the summer of 2020, she is, on the other hand, a fervent defender of the atom. “LR runs after the RN, which runs after LR… It’s the shallot race, observes Nicolas Goldberg, energy analyst at Colombus Consulting. And the historic opposition between nuclear and renewables still degrades the debate. ”

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