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The CMA CGM Group and the French National Forests Office strengthen their partnership to help restore forests damaged by fire

During this summer’s heatwaves, more than 70,000 hectares of forest were destroyed by fire across France, six times more than the average for the last 15 years.

In response, the CMA CGM Group and the French National Forests Office (ONF), the organization in charge of managing forests in mainland France and in French overseas departments and territories which manages close to 11 million hectares of public forests owned by the state or by local, wanted to extend and strengthen their partnership in order to provide a practical response and combat these devastating natural catastrophes.

On September 7, following on from the partnership established in 2021, CMA CGM signed an ambitious three-year agreement with the Fund-Act for the forest, an endowment fund set up by the ONF, which aims to develop, support and facilitate efforts to protect and develop forests in France. The agreement will allow rapid action to restore forests destroyed by fire.

The endowment fund accepts donations from individuals and businesses in order to fund practical projects that benefit French forests, focusing on a program with six aspects:

Planting and regenerating for tomorrow,
Taking action in favor of biodiversity,
Preventing natural risks,
Welcoming all visitors,
Safeguarding historic and cultural heritage,
Innovating for the benefit of forests.

A fund to protect the environment and to preserve and restore forests

This year, CMA CGM is extending its partnership with ONF and making a commitment to donate €3 million over the next three years.

Through this corporate philanthropy initiative, the CMA CGM Group wants to provide long-term support to efforts to restore fire-damaged forests and help fund innovative solutions, studies and systems that improve our understanding of fire risks and prevent fires in forests across the whole of France.

CMA CGM’s donation will be used initially to quickly begin the first stages of work to restore fire-damaged forests, i.e. post-fire analyses and emergency work to make forests safe, followed by restoration work itself.

The donations will be distributed as follows:

20% will be allocated for the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region, via the RESPIR fund, to restore public and private forests and particularly the Montagnette and Rougon forests.
60% will be allocated to the South-west region:
Restoration of public forests near coastal areas and sand dunes in the Médoc region (forests of Teste-de-Buch, Lagnereau, Hostens etc.), prioritizing the removal of burnt wood ;
Purchase of a fleet of vehicles.
20% will be allocated to public forests damaged by fire in other regions such as Brittany and Eastern Central France.

The partnership will also go beyond remedial action by funding:

Resources and equipment for monitoring and combating incipient fires in risky areas in order to prevent outbreaks and to contain fires as much as possible;
Initiatives to raise awareness and provide information among schoolchildren and the general public;
Studies and experiments to gain knowledge about preventing fire risks.

The CMA CGM Group is taking practical action for the planet

In 2021, the Group worked with ONF to address an environmental emergency following large-scale fires that devastated 7,000 hectares of forest in the Massif des Maures in the Var area. CMA CGM made a €1 million donation, which speeded up the restoration of natural spaces within damaged areas in the Plaine des Maures, via the RESPIR fund created in April 2021 by the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Region Council.

This donation funded practical action that benefited the local community:

A post-fire analysis, which made it possible to prioritize the areas that most urgently needed to be made safe and the types of work required.
Emergency work in eight municipalities.
Restoration work that is still continuing, in accordance with very strict guidelines for protecting the Hermann’s tortoises that live in the Massif des Maures.
Subsequently, after the natural regeneration phase in the fire-damaged areas, the ONF will oversee the planting of tree species suited to the new climate.

Alongside the ONF Fund-Act for the forests, CMA CGM is reasserting its commitment to combating climate change and preserving biodiversity. The Group is working with ONF to raise awareness and educate people about the environment and about combating and preventing fires, as well as researching innovative solutions and improving knowledge about forest fires.
Source: CMA CGM

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