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(en) France, Union Communiste Libertaire AL #309 - Ecology, Major useless projects: the ZAD du Carnet, to defend the Loire estuary (de, it, fr, pt)[machine translation]

Date Wed, 18 Nov 2020 10:34:54 +0200

The Loire estuary is under threat from the extension of the large seaport of Nantes Saint-Nazaire. A ZAD was established on the Carnet site, while in Donges, almost opposite, the occupation of a farm gave birth to the People's Village. The two are now launching a joint appeal to join the estuary in defense. ---- The Grand Maritime Port of Nantes Saint-Nazaire and the local agglomeration community are seeking to spread new industries on both sides of the Loire. On the one hand, the island of Carnet, the center of a victorious anti-nuclear fight of the 80s and 90s, since re-savaged, today a mosaic of dry and wet environments, intended to be partly backfilled but defended by a whole new area to defend since August 31: La ZAD du Carnet.

On the other hand, a 57 hectare grove and a place of collective and supportive life, in an old farm where families with children live, now threatened: clearing in progress, eviction scheduled for early October. The People's Village (VDP), the Stop Carnet collective and the Carnet ZAD are launching a joint call to join the Loire estuary.

Resistance against the proposed industrial zone dedicated to environmental technologies on the banks of the Loire has taken root on the Carnet site, where 110 hectares of natural area and 116 protected species are threatened [1]. The festive mobilization weekend organized by the Stop Carnet collective on August 29 and 30 brought together nearly 1,500 people and made it possible to sensitize the local population and the media to the ecological consequences of such a project.

The establishment of the ZAD au Carnet
Following the collective's call to prevent the works the following Monday, activists from all over France erected barricades to block access to bulldozers. Unfortunately, the start of work on the so-called " compensatory " measures had started on the sly the previous week. This work, which was to remove the baccharis, an invasive plant, was carried out with a bulldozer, devastating everything in its path (30 cm of arable land over several hundred square meters): the edge of the Loire begins to sag and part of the reed beds has been devastated ...
To prevent the work, activists from all over France set up barricades.
But the ZAD prevents the continuation of work and daily life is organized on the spot: barricades have been erected on the two access points to the area, adjacent unused land is squatted, camps have been created at various strategic locations. of the area. On these places, light self-constructions are emerging to protect the inhabitants from the cold and the rain: common living spaces arranged thanks to the recovery and donations of materials, bicycle repair workshop to move around the site , etc.

The young ZAD breaks free from the rules imposed by capitalism and hopes to federate in order to establish a sufficient physical and material balance of power against the promoters of the project, the Grand Port Maritime de Nantes - Saint-Nazaire, the political actors (State, Region, Department) and economic players (Engie, Cargill, Total ...).

However, it does not plan to evolve, in the event of victory, into a definitive Autonomous Zone, due to the great fragility of the ecosystem - the ambition being rather to protect the zone in order to sanctify it. The Stop Carnet collective, for its part, essential support for the ZAD, mobilizes legal remedies and organizes events in order to raise awareness, mobilize and reflect on a more desirable Loire estuary, far from the artificialization and commodification of the environment. living.

The activists present on the spot face a very particular repression. Although the new Loire-Atlantique prefect Didier Martin does not seem in a hurry to evacuate the area, preferring first to focus on the eviction of the Village of the people of Donges, constant surveillance takes place.

In fact, a helicopter flies over the area daily, drones have already been sighted, infiltration attempts have taken place, high-level surveillance equipment has been spotted, and daily police checks take place on the roads leading to the zoned.

The People's Village under threat of eviction
Almost opposite the site of the Carnet industrial project, on the other side of the Loire, a natural and agricultural area of 57 hectares is threatened by another project to extend the industrial activities of the great maritime port of Nantes Saint-Nazaire ! Resistance to the work which should begin shortly materialized in the occupation of a farm and agricultural land which had to be razed for the extension of the industrial site of Donges.

In May 2019, a few yellow vests and members of the former People's House of Saint-Nazaire gathered in the countryside of Donges, at a place called La Petite Lande, to renovate and maintain an old abandoned farmhouse, in the goal of developing an autonomous village and preserving this place and its surroundings. In the meantime, some have left, others have arrived, especially since the end of confinement. They have joined the Sourie'ion anti-waste collective which collects unsold products from the markets.

The land of 10 hectares includes, in addition to the house, an old press, a bread oven and an adjoining workshop, a well and a barn. This land and its buildings were bought by a private company for future demolition and an expansion of the industrial zone of Donges. The surrounding land, belonging to a horse breeder, would also be affected (45 hectares).

The occupation of this place therefore also aims to preserve this environment. A person on the spot testifies: " Our project is the development of an autonomous village with vegetable and fruit crops, by promoting creative, alternative, green energy, eco-construction and participatory projects " projects .

Following the court's decision to expel the people's village in early October, it is appealing for support. A festive weekend will be held there for the occasion on October 3 and 4.

ZAD activists, with the UCL Ecology commission


[1] See Libertarian Alternative of July-August 2020, " Destructive projects: on the banks of the Loire, the threat of an industrial zone " .

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