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Plenary session - Statement by the candidate for President of the Commission

Current nominations for top jobs in Ursula von der Leyen’s European Commission reveal a worrying lack of candidates with a track record of promoting green policies.

There is a danger that the College of 27 European Commissioners – who are nominated by national governments – will fail to reflect the wishes of millions of voters who turned out in the European elections. Climate and environment were major concerns for voters in May, with candidates backing greater European action enjoying a ‘green wave’ of electoral success.

With 21 Member States so far having named their candidates or expected candidates, very few of these potential new Commissioners have any noteworthy green credentials.

Jeremy Wates, Secretary General of the European Environmental Bureau said:

“We commend President-elect von der Leyen for indicating that she will not hesitate to ask Member States to nominate female candidates if needed to achieve full gender equality in the Commission. She should at the same time insist on nominations that will ensure a College of Commissioners that is fit to deliver on the European Green Deal that she has promised. A failure to address this aspect would be a complete betrayal of the ‘green wave’ which was one of the most significant outcomes of the European elections.”

The European Environmental Bureau (EEB) is Europe’s largest network of environmental citizens’ groups with 150 member organisations in more than 30 countries. 

Wates concluded:

“The EEB is not party-political. While it might raise questions if – despite having around 10% of seats in the Parliament – there are no Green Party Commissioners, what is more important is that there are people at the top table who have the expertise, background and credibility to deliver on the significant climate and environmental promises von der Leyen has made.”

Following her election, the EEB welcomed von der Leyen’s strong call for climate and environmental action that could transform Europe over the next five years.

For more information:

Anton Lazarus - Communications Manager

anton.lazarus@eeb.org

+3222708818