France brings draft legislation to ban oil and gas operations by 2040


The French Government has introduced a draft legislation that aims to end all oil and gas exploration and production on its mainland and overseas territories by 2040.

The move is aimed at reducing reliance on fossil fuels and keeping global warming under control.

France is a signatory to the Paris climate agreement, under which it agreed to take appropriate measures to address climate change by shifting its focus to clean and renewable energy sources.             

The proposed ban also covers shale gas exploration and extraction.

In addition, the country is planning to stop using coal for power generation by 2022.

France Environment Minister Nicolas Hulot was quoted by Associated Press as saying: “I have absolute faith in the capacity of renewable energies to become progressively a very important source to fulfil our energy needs.”

"I have absolute faith in the capacity of renewable energies to become progressively a very important source to fulfil our energy needs."

According to figures from International Energy Agency (IEA), as of 2014, the country’s total energy production stood at 137.13 million tonnes of oil equivalent (mmtoe), while it imported 114.24mmtoe.

Major oil and gas operators in the country include Total, which has exploration operations in the overseas territory of French Guiana.

Meanwhile, Vermilion Energy has operations in the Paris Basin, including the Neocomian field, where it completed its maiden drilling programme and brought all four wells into production.

Other assets held by the company in the country include the Champotran field in the Paris Basin and the Vic Bilh gas field.

The French Government is planning to pass the legislation by the end of the year.

In July this year, the UK Government also unveiled its policy to ban cars fuelled by petrol and diesel by 2040.