French and Riviera News Tuesday 9th August 2022

News

Road accident - A motorcyclist has been seriously injured following a road accident on the Moyenne Corniche. The accident occurred shortly after 6pm on Monday when the motorcyclist reportedly collided with a vehicle. An investigation has been opened to determine the exact circumstances.

Meanwhile there were long tail backs on the A8 motorway on Monday afternoon following an accident. One person was slightly injured and taken to hospital by the emergency services. Traffic was reduced to one lane after the Cagnes sur mer exit westbound.

65 additional police officers in Marseille - France’s Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin has been visiting Marseille to welcome 65 additional national police officers and present his plan to fight urban rodeos. French President Emmanuel Macron had promised 300 new police officers in 2 years. Since last year, more than 130 officers have joined the force in Marseille.

Heatwave - Virtually all of the departments in the southeast and southwest of France are still on either yellow or orange alerts for heat from Meteo France. Locally, the Var and the Alpes-Maritimes are both on yellow alerts until 6am tomorrow morning. Meteo France are saying that the heatwave is due to last until the middle of the month.

Historically low water level - The water level of the Lake Sainte-Croix has never been so low dropping 6 metres. The third largest lake in France is bearing the brunt of the water deficit and in some places, visitors can even walk on the bottom of the lake. President of the local water commission Jacques Espitalier says the lack of snow last winter and the low rainfall this spring explain today's water deficit.

Farmers reduce water use yet golf courses are still being watered - Meanwhile, while farmers have had to reduce their use of water, the greens of the 70 golf courses in the Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur region are still being watered, a situation which has been denounced by several elected officials. Golf course owners express that without a green, they will have to close and fire their employees. According to a 2003 Senate report, the total consumption of all golf courses in 2002 represented the equivalent of the annual consumption of a city of 500,000 inhabitants (36 million cubic meters). A study, published by the French Golf Federation (PDF), estimates this consumption at 29 million cubic meters of water in 2010.

Pebble Castle World Championship - Today in Villeneuve Loubet the World Pebble Castle Championships are taking place. Celebrating its 31st edition the competition will see participants from all over the world attempt to walk away with the prestigious title for 2022. 

Business

The US Senate has approved a sweeping $700bn (£577bn) economic package that includes major legislation on healthcare, tax and climate change. The bill seeks to lower the cost of some medicines, increase corporate taxes and reduce carbon emissions. The passing of the bill is a boost ahead of mid-term elections. But it is a significantly scaled-back version of the $3.5tn package that was first proposed by Biden’s administration.

The World Bank has announced an additional $4.5 billion in aid for Ukraine, with funds provided by the United States. The release of this new aid should enable the government to meet the "urgent needs caused by the war". The amount will be paid in instalments to the Ukrainian government, with a first instalment of $3 billion this month. In a press release the World Bank said that thanks to this funding, the government and local authorities should be able to cover social, pension or health expenses. In total the amount of emergency financial assistance mobilized for Ukraine has reached nearly $13 billion.

A leading exporter of olive oil has warned its price is set to rise as heatwaves hit production in Spain. Acesur, which supplies the UK's biggest supermarkets said customers could see prices rise by 20-25%. Spain produces nearly half of the world's olive oil. But the country, along with other parts of Western Europe which produce olive oil, including Italy and Portugal, has been experiencing extreme temperatures and a lack of rain in recent weeks.

The Casper mattress brand wants to pay people to sleep. According to the company's ad, the future employees must have "exceptional sleep ability". The New York-based mattress company has posted an ad for a somewhat peculiar job as it seeks to hire professional "sleepers,". Future employees will need to be able to nap "in stores and in unexpected places around the world”. The "dream candidate" should have "exceptional sleep ability". Those interested can apply until August 11th.

Sport

Football - Everton have completed the signing of England centre-back Conor Coady on a season-long loan. The Merseyside-born 29-year-old will wear the number 30 shirt for Everton.

Tennis - Serena Williams claimed her first singles win in 14 months as she beat Spain's Nuria Parrizas Diaz to reach the second round of the National Bank Open in Toronto. The American great, 40, showed glimpses of her vintage ball striking in a 6-3 6-4 victory over the world number 57. Williams' last singles success was at the 2021 French Open.

Commonwealth Games - Legendary Birmingham rocker Ozzy Osbourne made a surprise appearance to bring the curtain down on a hugely successful Commonwealth Games. Osbourne and his band Black Sabbath provided a fitting climax to a star-studded closing ceremony. The 73-year-old 'Prince of Darkness' has not performed for several years due to ill health. The Earl of Wessex, Prince Edward, officially declared the Games closed after the flag handover to Victoria, the Australian state that will host the 2026 edition.

Weather

The yellow heatwave alert for the Alpes Maritimes and the Var region has been extended until tomorrow morning. Highs of 31 degrees along the coast in Nice, Cannes and Antibes. 34 degrees inland in the Alpes Maritimes with possible thunderstorms this afternoon with a yellow warning in place from 3pm to 9pm. Highs of 32 degrees in Saint Tropez reaching 36 degrees inland in Gonfaron in the Var.

This evening will feel cooler inland in the Var and Alpes Maritimes with 17 to 18 degrees compared to 24 degrees along the coast with clear skies.

Outlook for Wednesday and Thursday fine and sunny highs of 30-32 risk of showers tomorrow inland in the Var.

Sea temperature:    27 degrees       UV level:           8

Sunrise:             06.27hr                       Sunset:              20.43hr

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