François Hollande, President of France, and Ségolène Royal, French Minister of Ecology, Sustainable Development and Energy, visited the Massif des Bauges Global Geopark on 20 August 2015 to sign the “Territoire à Energie POSitive” (TEPOS) convention, thus designating the Global Geopark, together with the Annecy and Chambéry urban clusters, as France’s first “Positive Energy Territory”.
Located in the northwestern part of the Alps in France, the Massif des Bauges Global Geopark has a spectacular landscape that resulted from tectonic folding during mountain building between 20 and 30 million years ago. The territory now functions as a water tower with numerous karstic networks, deep and narrow canyons and waterfalls supplying the two largest natural lakes in France. The area was designated as Global Geopark in 2011. A Global Geopark is a unified area with geological heritage of international significance. Global Geoparks use that heritage to promote awareness of key issues facing society in the context of the dynamic planet we all live on.
The Massif des Bauges Global Geopark, together with the agglomerations of Annecy and Chambéry, is the first territory to be designated “Energy Positive Territory” in France. Over 500 territories applied for the TEPOS label, which was awarded to 212 of them. Each of these territories will receive the recently created Energy Transition Fund that comprises an initial 500,000 euros; the financial support received via the Fund can increase, depending on the quality of the projects, to a maximum of 2 million euros. The call for TEPOS projects was initiated by Ségolène Royal.
Jean-Louis Joseph, President of the Parks Federation, and Philippe Gamen, President of Massif des Bauges Global Geopark, also participated in the visit.