National Assembly: no absolute majority for the planet either, but…

They are climatologistsoceanographers, hydrologists, ecologists, geographers. And they too hoped to obtain an absolute majority in the National Assembly. Not really for them. But for the planet. For the climate and the biodiversity. They had given themselves the means. Taking on their time. For three days, 40 renowned scientists would take turns around the Palais-Bourbon to meet our newly elected MPs. This Wednesday, June 22, at the end of this unprecedented operation in France – an operation initiated by Christophe Cassou, climatologist, and Matthieu Orphelin, former environmentalist deputy -, in the world itself, they had finally affected a little more than one quarter of the hemicycle. One hundred and fifty-four deputies for one ” majority “… quite relative.

Benoît Halgand was one of the volunteers of “For an ecological awakening” – an association of young professionals and students from Grandes Ecoles – present on site to provide logistics. And play touts. ” Quite many deputies assured us that they were interested, curious to know more about these themes. But that the timing was not the best. » Those who, it seems, have not yet taken the measure of the urgency. And to whom the awareness proposed by the scientists, however, could undoubtedly have been very beneficial.

The organization has also seen its fair share of skeptics. Of those who still see in ” the climate change an opinion from which one must know how to distance oneself”. Of those who judge that a researcher author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has nothing to teach them. Or of those who believe that France “does enough already”. “Very isolated cases”assure us the volunteers united under the banner of “Mandate Climate Biodiversity ». So, leave them to their beliefs.

Science has solutions to offer

The important thing is rather that “The vast majority of MPs we saw put themselves in a learning posture. They expressed their desire to continue the exchanges. Some even came back several times. Others stayed for more than two hours – instead of the 20 minutes “union minimum”. Proof, perhaps, of the lack of knowledge in matter of climate and biodiversity within the population of MEPs. Perhaps also within the population more generally. “Knowledge of the challenges facing us is generally approximate”confirm the researchers at the end of the three days of action.

“We had a lot of requests, on Twitter, on the part of business leaders, administrative employees or journalists, who also wish to benefit from this kind of awareness-raising. » A first step therefore seems to have been taken at the start of the week.

“We are convinced that the subject of the climate and that of biodiversity must be at the top of the bill throughout this mandate”, says Benoît Halgand. If these subjects were to continue to be ignored, indeed, the consequences, the researchers warn us, could be dramatic. “In France too, biodiversity is collapsing. And our country is not quite in phase with its climate objectives. The last heat wave, it has again shown that there are also important issues on the side of adaptation. »

Weather events, waves of heat, droughts, storms. There has also been a lot of talk about it around the Palais-Bourbon. “The deputies came with the problems of their constituency in their pockets. The effects of climate change that they are beginning to observe on the ground. » The objective was also that. Show elected officials that scientists have solutions to offer. That they can help them in the implementation of their policies by providing them with very concrete courses of action.

Continue the exchanges

Even if the objective of an absolute majority has not been achieved, “we clearly did not waste our time”, believes the organization. Most MPs who have passed through the hands of scientists have admitted to having ” learned a lot “. “Awareness is one of the prerequisites for action. Before being able to make the right decisions, you have to be fully aware of the issues. And it was important to intervene from the start of this new mandate. Before the deputies are overtaken by a whole bunch of political subjects. Even before they choose their groups. With the hope that the fight against climate change and for the maintenance of biodiversity will be among their priorities. »

And to get there, no masterful speeches. But almost intimate exchanges. “With the idea that everyone retains a few facts”, explains Christophe Cassou. And leave like Anne Genetet (Together!) with “things that allow you to argue against those who want them challenger».

Thanks to the Mandat Climat Biodiversité action, deputies and scientists seem to have finally met. They started talking to each other. “First seeds are sown. » And the hope now is to succeed in maintaining the link. The researchers promised. They will be present whenever elected officials need clarification. “Scientists are not only there to advance research. They are also there to share their knowledge, to transmit. Today, it is important that they can inform politics. At the start of the week, many MPs were enthusiastic about the idea of ​​this new collaboration. The future will tell us how sincere it was…”

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