It is the end of an ecological absurdity, but also of an era for lovers of aperitifs on the terrace and restaurateurs: from this Friday April 1, it will be forbidden for cafes and restaurants to heat outside. A beneficial measure that should save half a million tons of CO2 annually.
As snow falls in large flakes over part of France, patio enthusiasts will need to get out their hats and gloves. The measure banning heated terraces, originally planned for winter 2020, officially came into effect on Thursday, March 31, 2022, according to a decision published in the Official Gazette. It should save the equivalent of the annual average emissions of 300,000 cars.
The initiative was part of the Climate Law project. It has benefited from additional time before implementation to support restaurateurs who are already severely affected by the health measures linked to the pandemic. Without a way to warm up their customers outside, they fear a drop in sales. According to the National Group of Independent Hotel and Restaurant Operators, “terraces represent 30% of the turnover of all establishments”reports Le Figaro† Indeed, since 2008 the smoking ban in cafes and restaurants had moved some of the smoking clientele to the terraces. But professionals have been warned: if they do not respect this ban, the owners of establishments risk up to €3,000 in fines.
For their part, the cities of Rennes and Lyon have not waited to make the measure effective, as heated terraces have been banned since January 1, 2020 for the first and November 2021 for the second.