The younger environmental activist, together with three different environmental activists, was obtained on the French National Assembly on Wednesday 16 March. They advocated the oil mega-project TotalÉnergies in Uganda and warned parliamentarians concerning the danger to the setting and native communities that the challenge entails.
In the small meeting room of the National Assembly, solely a handful of deputies had been current to hearken to the testimonies of Ugandan activists. Diana Nabiruma explains how the pipeline will have an effect on the native inhabitants.
“Almost a third of the pipeline will be built in Lake Victoria’s basin. But between 30 and 40 million people depend on this lake in East Africa for their water supply. We know that pipelines are always leaking. So in the event of a leak, the water demand for almost 40 million people are affected, ”argues Diana Nabiruma.
More than 400 boreholes and a 1,450 km long pipeline for an investment of several billion euros, the mega project will, according to Total, represent contracts worth 1.7 billion euros with local construction companies and create, in the long term, more than 3,000 direct and indirect jobs.
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But activists point out above all the many risks of the project: entire villages displaced, risks to the survival of protected species, significant greenhouse gas emissions … the list of dangers is long. Those who oppose the project are subject to pressure from the Ugandan authorities. Several activists have been jailed.
The French deputy for ecologist Mathieu Orphelin condemns France’s position in this project. “It is a place that is sort of unforgivable. This is the hole between nice phrases, which says that we should always attempt to restrict world warming to 1.5 levels … And in point of fact, the federal government is performing diplomatically to help Total’s efforts in Uganda.”
Mathieu Orphelin promises to challenge the French government again, but for Ugandan activists “it will not be guarantees that can save us, however actions”.
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