Evening Update Friday 1 December 2023

About half a dozen departments in south-east France, just north of our region, are on Meteo France orange alerts for heavy rain and flooding. Some departments are also on alert for snow and ice. The prefecture of the Haut-Alpes said today that rain since last night has caused "significant damage" and that communications with the north of the department are "seriously compromised on landlines and mobiles". There have been several landslides and numerous roads have been blocked. In our region, Meteo France have a yellow warning for heavy rain and flooding in the Alpes Maritimes until midnight tonight. There are also yellow warnings for high winds for much of the day tomorrow in the Alpes-Maritimes and the Var, with gusts of about 115km per hour expected around St Tropez. Meteo France have said that high winds are also expected in Corsica with gusts possibly reaching 180 - 200 km/h at Cap Corse.

A civil security exercise has been taking place today on the Ile Sainte-Marguerite. The theme of the exercise was “fire – forest fires”. It is part of a regular training cycle in crisis management by involving professionals called upon to intervene, in particular the Alpes-Maritimes firefighters. The objective is to test planned operational procedures. During the exercise, the Prefecture of Alpes-Maritimes and the Town Hall of Cannes triggered the France-Alert system, to deliver texts to nearby mobile phones, and the population alert siren system.

Meanwhile, the Prefect of the Var has held a meeting to review the situation regarding forest fires in the department. Philippe Mahé met with Philippe Laureri, the president of the departmental association of municipal civil security reserves and municipal forest fire committees to take stock of the past season and prepare for the one to come. The prefect said that the mobilization of municipal reserve teams is essential to prevent forest fires and inform the public during the summer season.

Police are searching for a teenager who is suspected of killing his parents. An inquiry has been opened after two charred bodies with gunshot wounds were found at a house in the Isere department in the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region. 15 year old Valentin Nurdin is actively being sought by police.

President Macron has been speaking at the COP28 climate meeting in Dubai today along with other leaders. The president addressed the issue of the role of fossil fuels, particularly coal. He said that coal is a "real absurdity" and urged G7 countries to stop the use of coal by 2030.

Nice Mayor Christian Estrosi has inaugurated a BioNGV bus refuelling station in Drap. He said that by the end of 2025 all thermal buses in the region will be replaced with clean engines, amounting to 450 buses with 50% electric and 50% bioNGV. The result is a reduction of 14,900 tonnes of CO2 in 2025, or a reduction of 57% of emissions across the entire transport network. The mayor said that with electric and bioNGV buses already in service and the tram system, 78% of trips made by users are already clean.

 

BUSINESS

The UK government has intervened to scrutinise the sale of the Daily Telegraph to a company backed by the Abu Dhabi ruling family over public interest concerns. The UK Culture and Media Secretary said that the deal has been referred to the Competition and Markets Authority, which will look at jurisdictional and competition matters, and the media regulator Ofcom, which will look at "the need for accurate presentation of news and free expression of opinion in newspapers".

Train drivers in the UK have voted to continue taking strike action for the next six months. Drivers are beginning over a week of industrial action today which lasts until 9 December. The Aslef union has also imposed an overtime ban. Aslef is pushing for a pay increase for its members. The average salary for train drivers was just over £59,000 per year in 2021.

UK manufacturing production contracted for the ninth consecutive month in November according to a widely watched survey of purchasing managers by S&P Global. However, it said that the rate of decline eased sharply. Their Purchasing Managers Index posted 47.2 in November. A figure below 50 indicates contraction. UK export orders fell again in November. They have now fallen for 22 consecutive months.

 

SPORT

Football... Everton have submitted a formal appeal against an independent commission's decision to hand them a 10-point Premier League deduction for breaches of financial rules. The club has previously admitted the breach but said they were "shocked and disappointed" at the severity of the punishment.

Tennis... Rafael Nadal has confirmed that he will be playing at the Brisbane International after almost a year out because of injury. The 37 year old has been out of action since injuring his hip flexor in last January's Australian Open. He has said he plans to retire at the end of the 2024 season.

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