The reversal of France’s fuel tax sends a worrying message to world leaders meeting this week in Poland to firm up climate commitments, says Olive Heffernan

Protesters in yellow vests have clashed with police over rising fuel prices

Protesters in yellow vests have clashed with police over rising fuel prices

Etienne De Malglaive/Getty

It’s almost hard to believe. Three years ago, Paris was the scene of a groundbreaking deal on climate change. Now, it is reeling from its worst riots in 50 years, ignited by a proposed tax on dirty fossil fuels.

What started as an online petition against rising fuel prices soon exploded into violent protest. Cars have been set alight, shops have been vandalised and four people have died in the past month. Prime Minister Edouard Philippe – who was scheduled …

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