President Macron vows to protect the Mont-Blanc massif from overcrowding


Emmanuel Macron, the President of France, visited Chamonix on 13 February 2020.

Among the topics discussed were biodiversity, global warming and overcrowding in the Mont-Blanc massif.

President Macron announced new rules when he visited the famous Mer de Glace.

Mer de Glace has been shrinking rapidly over the past 30 years, photo: Steve Baldwin
President Macron visiting Mer de Glace in Chamonix, photo source
President Macron visiting Mer de Glace, photo source @LeDauphine
Mer de Glace is rapidly shrinking, photo taken on 3 February 2020, photo source

"What we see with this glacier melting is irrefutable proof of global warming," Mr Macron said in Chamonix after visiting the 7.5 km (4.7 mi) glacier.

Mer de Glace, France's largest glacier, has shrunk dramatically over the past 30 years.

According to the BBC, President Macron said that 2020 would be a decisive year for the environment and that the fight for biodiversity was "a fight for our own survival". 

 “It’s the battle of the century,” Macron said.

According to The Guardian, the French government is to establish a protected zone around Mont-Blanc and limit the number of people who can access the summit.

Climbers will also be asked for proof they have planned their ascent, that they have reserved places at reservations en route and are carrying specified equipment.

Moreover, the fines for visitors who fail to obey the rules would rise from €35 to €1,500. The order will regulate the 300 climbers/day climbing the Mont-Blanc summit in the summer (The Times).

Mr Macron's visit to Chamonix and Saint-Gervais came after Jean-Marc Peillex, mayor of Saint Gervais, urged the president via an open letter to take measures against "wackos" climbing Mont-Blanc, after a series of unfortunate & reckless events happening in the summer of 2019.

In November 2019, President Macron answered to Jean-Marc Peillex, reassuring him that he wanted to better protect the roof of Europe from high tourist influx during the summer season.

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