Europe’s security and economic prosperity depend on climate and nature

Posted on June, 09 2024

European voters reshuffled the political cards in Brussels, possibly resulting in a more fragile majority for the European Green Deal. Nevertheless, with the climate and nature crises affecting every European already today, EU leaders must continue to prioritise the green and socially fair transition to make Europe safe, sustainable and competitive.

"In these elections, voters expressed their very real concerns and frustrations. EU leaders and newly elected MEPs must recognise that ignoring the pressing threats of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution will only exacerbate the problems Europeans are facing, and that our current system is failing to address them,” said Ester Asin, Director of WWF European Policy Office. “It is their duty to protect Europeans from the impacts of this triple crisis—such as droughts, food insecurity and high energy prices—and ensure prosperity and economic resilience."


The elections highlighted how far-right and conservative narratives, focusing on short-term gains and disinformation, have clouded the real issues at hand, diverting attention from the necessity of the green transition that is crucial not only for nature and climate, but also for the financial security and social wellbeing of Europeans.


Recent polling shows that more than three-quarters of Europeans (78%) find that environmental issues have a direct effect on their daily lives and health. And more than four in five (84%) agree that EU legislation is necessary to protect the environment in their country. [1]


Tycho Vandermaesen, Policy & Strategy Director of WWF European Policy Office added, "We cannot allow disinformation and anti-green campaigns to dictate our future. The reality is that becoming greener boosts our economy and is a major job creator. More than 5.1 million people work in green jobs, and their number is growing year by year. Moreover, investments in clean energy contributed to nearly one-third of the EU’s GDP growth in 2023. It’s baffling how some parties ignore this simple reality, and continue to defend narrow economic interests of those industries that have contributed to the mess we find ourselves in today."


Taking into account the elections results, Member States and the European Parliament will now start political talks on the new political programme and priorities for the coming years.


"With the elections campaign now behind us, WWF urges the political centre to work together and heed the scientific consensus on climate and nature - making a priority out of the green and socially fair transition that was launched with the European Green Deal is the only way to secure Europe’s safety and competitive sustainability," concludes Vandermaesen.


Notes to Editor

[1] Data comes from the latest Eurobarometer on attitudes of Europeans towards the Environment


For more information, please contact:
Camille Gilissen
Communications officer, EU elections
+32 473 56 37 75

Person voting in the EU elections
© European Union 2024 - Source : EP