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France: Macron′s new environment chief: Greenwashing or green leading?

Nicolas Hulot, France's most famous environmental activist, is known for making waves. As a famous television personality, he has used his television show as a platform to attack pesticides, nuclear power, and even capitalism as a whole. "Our model is not sustainable," he has declared.

Last week, France's new president Emmanuel Macron nominated Hulot, widely known for his nature documentaries, to be the country's next environment minister. It was a surprising name in a list of cabinet nominations that were mostly center-right and market-friendly.

Hulot, who supported Macron's far-left rival Jean-Luc Melenchon, has been a noted opponent of free trade deals - something Macron champions. Hulot ran unsuccessfully as a Green political candidate in 2012.

He stands in particular contrast to Macron's nominee to be prime minister, the center-right Edouard Philippe. Philippe worked as a lobbyist for French nuclear energy group Areva from 2007 to 2010.

Now, companies are scrambling to figure out whether the appointment could mean an increase in environmental regulation - and a drastic phaseout of nuclear power - or whether it is merely a political gesture.

Read more: Macron′s new environment chief: Greenwashing or green leading? | DW Environment | DW | 23.05.2017

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