French strikes disrupt fuel deliveries, power supply for fourth day

Deliveries were blocked from leaving TotalEnergies’ refineries and depots on Friday, a company spokesperson said, as workers extended a strike over planned pension reforms to a fourth day.
About 40% of the morning shift of refinery operators were continuing the strike, the spokesperson said.
Deliveries were also disrupted at the Fos refinery, operated by ExxonMobil subsidiary Esso, a spokesperson for hardline union CGT said.
“The strike has been lifted at Port Jerome since Wednesday, but we are hopeful it will be there again next week,” the CGT spokesperson said.
Disruptions also continued at liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminals, with company Fluxys saying that their Dunkirk terminal jetty and truck loading bay were unavailable and delivery capacity was reduced to a minimum.
The disruptions were expected to continue until Tuesday, Fluxys said.
French power supply was also reduced by 14.4 gigawatts (GW) at nuclear, thermal and hydropower plants, a CGT spokesperson said. Power supply disruptions have lasted for over a week.
That equates to 22% of current total power supply, data from grid operator RTE showed.
However, France was not importing power from neighbors, suggesting that domestic supply was meeting demand.
Opinion polls show a majority of voters oppose President Emmanuel Macron’s plan to delay the state pension age by two years to 64, but the government says the policy change is essential to ensure the system does not go bust.
Job action in Belgium
In neighboring Belgium, only one in three trains were running on Friday, rail operator SNCB/NMBS said, as public sector workers went on strike nationwide to protest over a lack of staff, reduced budgets and increased workloads.
The strike also affects regional public transport, and local media reported it could impact the opening hours of some public services such as town halls and recycling parks.
International train connections were also be hit, with SNCB/NMBS announcing that 12 trains between Amsterdam and Brussels were canceled and a spokesperson for Thalys saying only two out of three of their trains would be running.
Separately, Eurostar said operators there don’t anticipate any impact on their timetable from Belgian strike action.
The strike on Friday is part of what the unions have coined “awareness and action week” over a perceived understaffing and underfunding of public services.

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