mayor announces moratorium on controversial water impoundment project

The mayor of La Clusaz (Haute-Savoie) announced a “moratorium” on the controversial construction of a hill reservoir on the Beauregard plateau, for reasons of legal certainty, in an interview at Dauphiné liberated, Tuesday, September 5. This project aims to supply the ski resort, in particular with artificial snow

“I cannot take such a risk until justice has come to an end”declared the mayor, Didier Thévenet, to the regional daily. “And we are not only talking about the legality of the suspension of the environmental authorization by the judge in chambers, but of a final judgment on the project”which can take ” several years “especially as “case law on the notion of major public utility is constantly evolving”explains the elected official, specifying that the moratorium was decided by the municipal council on August 17.

In October 2022, a prefectural decree authorizing the start of work for the construction of this reservoir requiring the digging of 148,000 cubic meters (m3) in the mountains for a cost of 10 million euros had been suspended by the administrative court of Grenoble in the name of environmental protection. This decision was welcomed by ociations and activists opposed to the project, who occupied the site.

Two thirds of the retained water intended for artificial snow

The mayor then ured that the majority of Clusians were in favor of restraint, which had been noted by the commission of inquiry report. He lamented that the opponents had made one “totem against skiing”. Because over the 148,000 m3 planned, a third must be devoted to drinking water, and the rest to the production of artificial snow.

In the interview at Dauphinehe repeats that La Clusaz, located “in a karstic mif [où prédominent des roches sédimentaires sensibles à la dissolution, principalement calcaires] which does not retain water has “really need water”. He also claims to believe “still at [l’]future “ skiing and regret having “has been the symbol and the center of ‘ski-bashing’ in this case”. This is why, he erts, “we don’t give up” And “We are going to beef up our project, in compliance with justice and the law”.

Read also: Article reserved for our subscribers In La Clusaz, a ZAD against artificial snow

The World with AFP

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