The mobilization against the pension reform continues Thursday, in particular in transport, ports, gas and electricity, while the government has chosen the passage in force, via 49.3, of the disputed project of Emmanuel Macron.
Air and rail traffic disrupted
Traffic should improve at the SNCF, but it will remain disrupted on Friday with, like Thursday, two out of three TGVs. The rate of strikers in the transport group stood at 6% on Thursday morning: 36% among drivers, 16% among controllers, 11% among switchers, 5% among material, equipment and commercial agents, according to a union sources.
According to the SNCF there will still be no night train and one in two TER on the national average. In the Paris region, traffic will remain degraded on the R line but it will improve on the RER D. The RATP expects almost normal traffic on the RER A and two out of three trains on its part of the RER B, compared to half of the trains on the SNCF part.
The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGAC) has asked airlines to cancel 20% of their flights at Paris-Orly, due to a strike by air traffic controllers.
Refineries on strike, Feyzin flinches
Most French refineries were still on strike on Thursday, this one being “renewed at TotalEnergies at the La Mède refinery, in Donges and at the Flanders depot”, Eric Sellini, CGT coordinator for the group, told AFP. . But the strikers are reluctant to shut down the sites completely, the stocks being almost full, because the operation is technically delicate and the restart process long. So much so that some fuel shipments have partially resumed in recent days at the Normandy refinery.
If the strike is very well attended in Donges and Flanders with respectively 80% and 100% of strikers on the morning shift, the mobilization faltered on the other hand at the Feyzin refinery where the strikers were “not numerous enough to block shipments Thursday, according to Hakim Bellouz, of FO. On production (refining and petrochemicals), “flows are reduced”, he added. In Donges, moreover, the state-owned SFDM fuel depot, located on part of the port, was blocked by barricades.
In Le Havre, the Compagnie Industrielle Maritime (CIM), which supplies fuel to the Normandy refinery (Total), that of Gravenchon (Exxon) as well as the Paris airports, has been blocked from Thursday until Sunday morning, against the pension reform and for purchasing power, according to the CGT.
Tensions in the gas
The CGT Energie has issued an “ultimatum” to Storengy, a subsidiary of Engie, to implement a major and rare drop in pressure in the gas networks, otherwise the strikers will take care of it, which could deprive of gas from power stations and certain industrial customers. A request refused by management.
Some of the group’s sites are experiencing “operational disruptions, with no impact at this stage on the security of supply”, Engie told AFP on Wednesday evening.
Drops in production and cuts in electricity
The EDF strikers continued to cut production sharply on Thursday morning. CGT Energie claimed 17,000 MW of load reduction, the equivalent of some 12 to 17 nuclear reactors. “At 8 a.m., the drop in load on all the means of production was 8,760 MW”, indicated the management of EDF, a large part of which is in hydroelectric power stations. French nuclear reactors produce between 900 and 1,450 MW of electricity.
Cuts were claimed by the CGT: 32,000 households impacted in the Ardennes in the cities of Sedan, Rethel and Vouziers, from 6:00 a.m., according to the distributor Enedis. Power was restored at 11:30 a.m.
Garbage cans in Paris: Unblocking of a deposit by the police
In Paris on Thursday morning, 9,400 tonnes of waste could not be collected, according to the town hall. A sharp increase compared to the day before (7,600 tonnes). The town hall refused to requisition garbage collectors but, summoned to give the list of its agents who could be requisitioned, it sent Thursday morning the list of its 4,000 agents assigned to cleaning public roads and collecting waste. The prefect of police of Paris, Laurent Nuñez said Thursday that he should sign the requisitions.
In addition, the police released Thursday in Vitry-sur-Seine (Val-de-Marne) a depot managed by Pizzorno Environnement, which collects garbage from the 15th arrondissement of Paris in particular. An intervention following a decision on Wednesday by the Créteil court, seized by Pizzorno Environnement.
The ports of Nantes-Saint-Nazaire, but also those of Brest, Le Havre and Calais, were stopped on Thursday as part of the “dead ports” day launched by the CGT, according to the union and the prefectures.
In Brest, around fifty strikers, port workers and dockers, were on site, AFP noted. Three containers blocked the access route to the port. In Le Havre, access to port terminals had been blocked since 6 a.m. by trucks, cranes, tire and pallet fires, according to the CGT federation of ports and docks (FNPD).
In Calais, strikers prevented trucks and private vehicles from accessing ferries to the United Kingdom, according to the CGT. Trucks were immobilized for several kilometers in relief areas along the roads leading to the port.
Maritime and river transport
Since Monday the strike has impacted the crossings of the ferry company Corsica Linea, forced to cancel several crossings from Marseille to Corsica and to postpone a crossing to Algiers, scheduled for Tuesday and which could finally take place on Friday.
In the East, it is river navigation on the Rhine which is slowed down due to a movement of CGT employees at the lock of Ottmarsheim, near Mulhouse.