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Could Emmanuel Macron be the first plastic free President of France ?


HIGH HOPES FOR FRANCE - There are many reasons for reducing reliance on plastics. In the end we hope that a sustainable economics argument may hold sway over short term convenience. We're voting for Emmanuel Macron# We'd urge you, the voters to share your thoughts with the Président @ 22 March 2021.




France is one of the few nations seeking to deal with plastic pollution by banning the sale of washing machines without plastic filters in the rinse. 


This is a bold first step that attracts much admiration. But, the same does not apply to other countries who are scrabbling about with half-hearted measures bereft of any real legal or enforceable bite, or indeed, any tangible solution. Thus the problem persists unabated with no real solution in sight generally, from short-sighted policies and policy makers lacking in vision - who simply won't apply the brakes. The lack of success in cleaning up the world's rivers and oceans to date speaks for itself.


We need more and immediate action in terms of applying the policy brakes. To this end The Cleaner Ocean Foundation has put together a (draft) 7 Point Plastic Plan, that they hope will be taken seriously by the UN's members in all things sustainable, especially the World Health Organization and Food and Agriculture Organization. As per SDG14: Life Below Water. The Plan also impinges on SDG13, where much plastic is burned to dispose of, causing huge CO2 plumes in developing countries.


Potentially the first Plastic-Free Président, Emmanuel Macron could help make a big difference in supporting proposals like this at UN level, and, for example, cleaning up one of the Europe's dirtiest rivers.


The Seine is France's signature river. Like the Thames in the UK, it reveals the state of play in France, alongside other potholed policies.



This is our (draft) 7 Point Ocean Plastic Plan:



1. Supermarket packaging transformation (back) to paper predominantly
2. Glass bottles, metal cans, waxed cartons over plastic, unless genuinely biodegradable 
3. Monitoring rivers and strict enforcement against micro-fiber spillages from treatment plants
4. Trackers for fishing nets and strict enforcement for dumping, unless accidents reported
5. Recycling of plastic to 95% with controlled incineration of non-reusable elements
6. Filtration on domestic machines to remove microfibers from clothing
7. Introduction of plastic credit (incentives) trading scheme to drive the clean up



River Seine pollution Paris, France



DIRTY BIRTIE - France should be concerned about their showcase river. The contamination of the River Seine (France) and its main tributaries (Yonne, Marne, Oise) have been studied, under different hydrological conditions, at the end of spring before the low watermark and at the beginning of autumn after the first swelling of flow.

The sector under study consists of the Seine basin, centered on the Paris area; the variability of PolyChorinated Biphenyls (PCB) concentration in water, apart from flow dependence, shows that important lateral discharges are involved. The pollution level is particularly noticeable at Paris and downstream from Paris and the median concentration in sediments reaches 3800 ng l−1 (ppb). Data on particulate organic carbon and various grain size fractions show the PCB to be preferentially adsorbed on organic-rich sedimentary particles.

Partition coefficients between particulate matter and liquid phase have been computed and show that the liquid phase has the main role in micropollutant transport.





The toxic pollutants in the surface runoffs include mercury, nickel, chromium, toluene, DDT, and other pesticides and herbicides. These pollutants are at an even greater amount when there are high rainfalls. This is not mainly because of the high runoffs cause by the rainfalls, but also because the sewage systems in Paris experience a "sanitary sewage overflow". Under these conditions, if the untreated sewage is leaked, it will discharge in the Seine River. Therefore causing pollution. 

The Seine is the premier river of France and in many eyes that of Europe. It is the romantic, the working and the most visited river in the world. It is a river that encourages dreams, personally it has been a cathartic river that allowed a young man shelter under one of its bridges when rebelling to follow a dream it is also a river of wonder, huge storms of lightning follow the turns and meanders of its flow lighting up the evenings with incandescent light that seems to envelop and at the same moment hang in the air.


The Seine was a sewer and still is; a regal drain of much of the north of France. A large area of the country; nearly 80,000 hectares the inhabitants of the communities along its banks let their effluents drain via its streams and tributaries to the sea. It has been one of its traditional roles from after the last ice age and humans came to inhabit its banks. Today the river is far less polluted than it has been for over 150 years, industry has ceased polluting the river; in reality industry in the old fashioned style; manufacture or processes along much of its length have closed down altogether.


The financial decline of European manufacturing on the mass scale of the past has almost ceased between the source and Rouen. The sewage from the cities has improved in quality markedly over the past twenty five years; the sewage from Paris no longer warrants the fish skeleton symbol that denoted gross pollution of the Seine in the 1980s and 90s. The river does run with raw sewage at times of heavy rain but not all the time. The river sediments are rich with heavy metals, mercury, copper and many others, the legacy of a bad old days when anything that needed to be disposed of was; into the river.

The river Seine is the lifeblood of the ‘city of love’ – and so, it’s about time that it was treated to a good cleanup. With €1 billion in the pipeline for the project, Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo has promised that the river will be clean enough to swim in by 2024. The aim of the project is to allow certain triathlon and swimming competitions during the Olympics to be hosted in the river.

These banks are so unique that they were granted UNESCO World Heritage status in 1991 and so, it only makes sense that the river within be kept clean and preserved.

Unfortunately, the current state of the river is not conducive to swimming – it’s so dirty that swimming is actually banned for health reasons. Célia Blauel, responsible for environment and water policy in Paris, warned Le Figaro newspaper that anyone who disobeys this rule risks ‘a nice dose of gastro and a nice big fine’. The river is thought to be polluted with E. coli bacteria, intestinal bacteria, natural pollutants and faecal matter, to name just a number of the risks.




 Narendra Modi for 1st plastic free prime minister of India Could Angela Merkel be the first plastic free Chancellor of Germany ?


    Could Xi Jinping be the first plastic free President of China ?    Bojo, Boris Johnson, hanging in there by the skin of his teeth


OCEAN HEALTH - We have high hopes that the most powerful world leaders will be pushing to secure fish health as part of their food security plans. This of course means ridding us of the plastic menace with a Plan that is technically workable, enforceable and economically sound. Ladies and gentlemen, we give you the 7Seven Point Plastic Plan.








WHAT A WASTE - Governments are unwilling to commit resources to recover the millions of tons of toxic plastic that is already in our oceans, even where it threatens long term food security and biodiversity.














BUILD UP - Plastic has accumulated in five ocean hot spots called gyres, see here in this world map derived from information published by 5 Gyres. unfortunately, with projects like SeaVax being refused funding, there is little hope that our ocean might be flushed clean. What we might hope for is that the United Nations opts for measures to (effectively) ban plastics for single use packaging.




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