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Nicolas Hulot: “Private companies must pull their weight”

The well-known French ecologist, Nicolas Hulot believes that concern over the need to protect the environment is gradually growing.

photos : abacapress - gilles bassignac | eugène vitry

A native of Brittany in north-western France, Nicolas Hulot’s career as a journalist, presenter, television producer and writer has helped to shape his stance on the environment. He has been the French Presidents’ special envoy for the preservation of the planet since December 2012 and recently visited Mauritius, in March 2014.

“The government officials responsible for these matters talked to me about the admirably detailed consultative process undertaken in the drawing up of the Maurice Ile Durable strategy. My one hope is that the strategy will now be implemented so that Mauritius can become a model for the region, especially through the Indian Ocean Commission, as well as internationally.”

As beach tourism is of major economic importance to Mauritius, he went on to say, “The sights here, both of the countryside and marine life, are invaluable assets in what is a highly competitive sector. Such a rich heritage needs to be protected, maintained and restored so that tourism development can be sustainable. Of course, business companies have a part to play in this. Even more so as they have no small means at their disposal and it’s in their own interest, especially as far as the tourism industry is concerned. But that’s not the only reason.”

The French President’s special envoy also believes that concern for the protection of the environment is gradually gaining ground. “The environmental cause cannot just be a matter of wishful thinking but needs global understanding that will lead us to a change of culture. And that doesn’t take place overnight! The one question mark I have is whether we will be quick enough.”

In his view, climate change needs us to combine our efforts and remember that Humanity as a whole has a common destiny. It is why the 21st session of the Conference of the Parties to The United Nations Climate Change Conference, which will take place in Paris in 2015, will be a very important gathering. “The future of Humanity depends on the success of this conference – and I believe there is now considerable understanding of what is at stake.”

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