The Greens claimed their best ever result in the European Parliament (EP) elections held over the weekend, in what is seen as voters’ call for climate action. The Greens/EFA group, projected to have around 20 seats more than so far, is set to be the fourth-largest force in the EP, which could put it in the kingmaker position.
“The Green Wave has swept across Europe. We want to thank everyone who has voted for change and climate action. Green parties have exceeded expectations in countries such as Germany, France, Ireland, Denmark, Finland and Austria and will play an ever more important role in shaping the political debate across Europe over the coming years. This trust given to us by voters is both a task and a responsibility to put green polices into action,” said Ska Keller, President of the Greens/EFA group and leading candidate for the European Green Party, also known as the European Greens.
Thank you to each and every one of you who voted Green. Together we brought the Green Wave to the European Parliament – where we will work tirelessly. For people. For Europe. For our planet!#GreenWave#EUelections2019 pic.twitter.com/XyezrpveYV
— European Greens (@europeangreens) May 26, 2019
For his part, Bas Eickhout, Vice President of the Greens/EFA group and leading candidate for the European Green Party, noted that any new European Commission should take into account the Green Wave’s mandate to drive change in Europe, noting that the program of climate protection, social justice and defense of rule of law and democracy gave the Greens this important win.
“It’s time the European Union puts all its efforts into a sustainable future and starts caring for its citizens, this must be at the heart of the program of the next Commission President. The Greens/EFA group is the only credible political force when it comes to climate action and we will bring this voice to the negotiation table,” he said.
The Greens claimed strong results in many European countries, though not in South-East Europe (SEE). In Germany, they emerged the second-strongest party, with a projected 22%, behind Chancellor Angela Merkel’s CDU/CSU alliance, which won 28%, according to preliminary results.
Greens advocating phasing out coal by 2030
The answer to the climate crisis exists and it starts with solar, wind and other renewables, according to the European Greens’ website.
“We must go for 100% renewables, use our energy efficiently, phase out fossil energy and nuclear power while creating sustainable jobs in affected regions. To cut emissions fast enough to reach the 1.5°C-world we will push hard for a just transition towards a net-zero-emissions economy. An EU carbon budget and a strong carbon floor price are needed to strengthen our efforts.”
The Greens advocate phasing out coal by 2030 and other fossil fuels soon thereafter and call for pulling private and public funds from fossil investments.
They also advocate a just transition to a carbon-neutral circular economy through a Green New Deal, while the rule of law and a humane approach to migration are also high on the list of the Greens’ priorities.