Coronavirus : the threat of the dune, the rise of the use of fossil fuels - The Point

This is a potential consequence unexpectedly to the crisis of the sars coronavirus. If some hope is to see it as the opportunity of an ecological transition, it

Coronavirus : the threat of the dune, the rise of the use of fossil fuels - The Point

This is a potential consequence unexpectedly to the crisis of the sars coronavirus. If some hope is to see it as the opportunity of an ecological transition, it is the opposite that might unfold, according to a commentary published Thursday by The Lancet. The fall in oil prices could cause an increase in the production of pesticides, fertilizers, or plastic. "The petrochemical industry could benefit from the lower oil prices to invest more in the factories that produce pesticides, fertilizers and plastics," said the Agence France-Presse Barbara Demeneix from the national Museum of natural History, author of this comment in the prestigious medical journal.

The diesel, pesticides, fertilizers, used in agriculture, or consumer product from the petrochemical industry such as plastics and detergents which are derivatives of fossil fuels such as coal, oil or gas. According to the commentary, about 44 % of oil is used for agriculture and the petrochemical industry.

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The importance of alternative sources of energy

"Our survival is now jeopardized by three major threats : climate change, loss of biodiversity and pollution. These threats are more closely linked than it seems at first glance due to their common origin, the fossil fuels," explains the endocrinologist CNRS. "In addition, some chemical compounds from these products can disrupt the hormonal system in human : it is endocrine disrupters", she adds.

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"By reducing our dependence on fossil fuels, particularly via the investment in alternative energies (solar, wind, geothermal), and the strengthening of research on chemicals with less harmful and biodegradable, we could reverse the climate crisis, current, limit the loss of biodiversity and chemical pollution and improve the environmental well-being and human health", says the endocrinologist.

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Updated Date: 21 May 2020, 18:34

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