Back in 2017, the Paris city administration launched a project worth a whopping €1.5 million to try to stamp out rats, but to no avail.
Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo has decided to form a committee to consider cohabitation between the City of Lights’ two million residents and six million rats, one of her deputies said during a city council meeting.
Anne Souyris, Paris deputy mayor for public health, added that the committee would be tasked with finding a solution that will be as effective as possible and not unbearable for Parisians.
Critics were quick to accuse the city administration of failing to take the problem seriously, with Geoffroy Boulard, head of the French capital’s 17th arrondissement, saying that Anne Hidalgo’s team never disappoints.
Boulard insisted that Paris deserves better, urging city authorities to outline a more ambitious plan against the proliferation of rats in public spaces.
The remarks followed the 17th arrondissement head slamming Hidalgo for not doing enough to eliminate rats in Paris, including during strikes in the French capital earlier this year, when heaps of garbage piled up across the city.
Animal rights group Paris Animaux Zoopolis, in contrast, hailed the city government’s move, saying in a statement that rats are present in Paris, as in all major French cities, so the question of cohabitation necessarily arises.
The city government’s “cohabitation” plan is an apparent U-turn on the botched 2017 anti-rat strategy, which was worth €1.7 million ($1.8 million) and stipulated the installation of airtight trash bins throughout Paris and extensive use of rat poison, among other things.
Sputnik / ABC Flash Point Wildlife Blog News 2023.