French and Riviera News Thursday 1st September 2022

News

Macron speaks out about school bullying ahead of students returning to school today - Ahead of students heading back to school across France today, French President Emmanuel Macron has published a video on TikTok for the victims of school bullying. In the clip shared on Wednesday, the head of state tells “victims to denounce their attackers and to speak out and not accept any form of bullying”. As a reminder there is a freephone number 3018 available to report any incidents and it’s available Monday to Saturday from 9am to 8pm.

Back to school - About 12 million students will return to school, college or high school from today Thursday 1st September the official start date of the new school year and as with every year, new things are to be expected, both in terms of programs and organization. Some changes will include 30 minutes daily of physical and sporting activity in primary schools. The introduction of French and mathematics assessments at CM1 level and the health protocol will be at its lowest level as the rules for wearing a mask and social distancing will be the same as those applied to the general population. In other words, wearing a mask is simply "recommended" in classes, but it will not be compulsory.

Strike action from bus drivers in Toulon today - Bus drivers of the Sodetrav network in Toulon in the Var have announced strike action today September 1st, in protest against the refusal from management “to increase wages despite negotiations carried out with unions. Disruptions are expected on lines 29, 39 and 103 in Hyères a popular route for schoolchildren as they return to the classroom today. For real time information on timetables and availability go to the reseaumistral.com website which will be updated regularly.

Most polluting vehicles no longer able to circulate in Marseille - From today Thursday 1st September, the most polluting vehicles will no longer be able to circulate in parts of the city centre of Marseille. The measure will be gradually extended until 2024. The Crit'Air sticker will soon become essential for driving in certain streets of Marseille. Cars considered "clean" have, for example, a Crit'Air 1, 2 or even green sticker, while the most polluting are classified Crit'Air 4, 5 or even unclassified (vehicles dating from before December 31, 1996). The main objective is to improve air quality. According to a recent study pollution is responsible for nine million premature deaths worldwide. From today, vehicles classified Crit'air 5 - those with diesel registered between January 1st, 1997 and December 31st, 2000 - as well as those not classified - dating from before 1996 - will no longer be able to access the ZFE. This concerns 2% of personal vehicles, 4.4% of heavy goods vehicles and 1% of utility vehicles. For the first month of application, the city ensures that the police will show tolerance during checks. However, from October, fines ranging from 68 to 180 euros will be issued.

Woman rescued in the sea at Saint-Aygulf - A woman in her sixties has been rescued after nearly drowning in the sea at Saint-Aygulf in Fréjus in the Var. The incident occurred on Wednesday afternoon. It was through the combined action of holidaymakers and lifeguards that the woman was safely brought to shore.

Hiker rescued by helicopter – Meanwhile, a hiker has been rescued by helicopter following a fall while walking in the Cap Roux area of the Estérel in Saint-Raphael in the Var on Wednesday afternoon. The woman in her 60s found herself unable to move following the fall and was airlifted to hospital nearby.

Could the hunting season be postponed in the Alpes Maritimes - The beginning of the hunting season in the Alpes Maritimes could be postponed due to the current drought following a call from an environmental association. The association seized the prefect of the Alpes Maritimes on August 16th requesting its postponement which was initially scheduled for September 11th. According to the collective, if the date is not postponed, this will lead to "a massacre of the wild animals concerned and will in turn destroy the species weakened by the extraordinary climatic situation".

"Buy local, spend less and support more"- The town council of Cavalaire sur mer in the Var is offering 30 euros in vouchers to families who buy local. The move intends to boost families purchasing power and support local businesses. The vouchers launched under the campaign “buy local, spend less and support more” were introduced on Wednesday. For more information go to the website www.ticketcommercant.fr/cavalairesurmer

French astronaut - French astronaut Thomas Pesquet has been angered by some internet users claiming that comments he had made were “proof that man has never been to the moon”. Internet users appeared to divert comments made by the astronaut following the recently aborted launch mission. Pesquet had said "we're really going to go very far, as far as no human being has ever gone from Earth”. Words read by some as "proof" that man has never  been on the Moon, a theory that has been circulating in conspiratorial circles since the first steps of Neil Armstrong in 1969.

Business

Russia has completely halted gas supplies to Europe via a major pipeline, saying repairs are needed. The Russian state-owned energy giant, Gazprom, said the restrictions on the Nord Stream 1 pipeline would last for the next three days. Russia has already significantly reduced gas exports via the pipeline. It denies accusations it has used energy supplies as a weapon of war against Western countries.

The inflation rate in the euro zone has broken a new record in August, at 9.1% over one year putting pressure on the European Central Bank (ECB), which should soon raise its interest rates. Inflation had already reached 8.9% in July for the 19 countries sharing the single currency. These figures are the highest recorded by the European statistics office since the start of the publication of the indicator in January 1997. By country, the lowest inflation was recorded in France (6.5%). It reached 8.8% in Germany, 9% in Italy and 10.3% in Spain, according to harmonized data calculated by Eurostat. The Baltic countries had the highest rates: 25.2% in Estonia, 21.1% in Lithuania and 20.8% in Latvia.

Snapchat will lay off 20% of its staff and shut down a string of new projects. About 1,200 employees will lose their jobs in the restructuring which had been expected after a year of poor financial results. The company was worth $130bn (112bn) a year ago. It's now valued at less than $20bn (£17bn). Snapchat said the cuts would help the company save an estimated $500m (430m) in annual costs. The company's CEO said the changes would be "difficult".

Sport

Tennis - Serena Williams showed she has no intention of ending her singles career without a fight after beating second seed Anett Kontaveit on another remarkable night at the US Open. Williams, ranked 605th and turning 41 next month, won 7-6 (7-4) 2-6 6-2 to stun the Estonian in New York. The American recently announced her intention to retire after her home major and is now into the third round. Williams will play Australia's Ajla Tomljanovic next on Friday.

Football – Liverpool beat Newcastle 2-1 in the Premier League last night as Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp said that he believes Fabio Carvalho's last-gasp winner against Newcastle at Anfield will be "remembered for years and years". Liverpool have a long history of late Anfield winners and this was another one to add to the list as victory was snatched from a disappointing draw.

In other action last night Arsenal beat Aston Villa 2-1, Bournemouth drew 0-0 against Wolves, Manchester City thrashed Nottingham Forest 6-0 and West Ham drew 1-1 against Tottenham. This evening Leicester City are at home to Manchester United kick off is at 9pm French time.

In France Paris St-Germain maintained their unbeaten start to the Ligue 1 season under new boss Christophe Galtier with a comfortable 3-0 victory at Toulouse. The French champions went ahead in the first half through Neymar's cool finish and Kylian Mbappe doubled the lead in the second period. PSG travel to Nantes on Saturday.

Cricket – England have named an unchanged 14-man squad for the third and deciding Test against South Africa at The Oval. The decider starts on 8 September at Surrey's home ground.

Golf - Open champion Cameron Smith says it will be "unfair" if LIV Golf players are not allowed to play in majors. The Australian world number two switched from the PGA Tour to Saudi-backed LIV on Tuesday. LIV players were allowed to compete at the 2022 US Open and the Open but there is no guarantee they will be allowed in majors going forward.

Weather

Some cloudy patches to begin with in the Alpes Maritimes with highs of 27 degrees in Monaco, Nice and Menton. Clear skies in the Var with highs of 31 degrees in Saint Tropez. A gentle breeze. Becoming increasing cloudy as the day progresses with possible showers inland. This evening going down to 23 degrees along the coast in the Alpes Maritimes and 20 degrees in the Var.

The outlook for Friday and heading into the weekend. Starting off cloudy tomorrow with the risk of thundery showers by the afternoon across the region which could continue into Saturday and Sunday. Highs of 27-29 degrees.

Sunrise     06.53hr                                 Sunset  20.06hr

Sea Temperature 26 degrees           UV level 6

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