Following the success of the EU election, the green parties demand that the EU top rankings be distributed.
“We want to see a rapid and sharp reduction in carbon dioxide emissions,” says Sven Giegold – the often outspoken EU parliamentarian who is the leader of the German Green Members in Parliament.
Green parties progressed overall in the European elections, but especially in Germany where Die Grünen became the second largest party with over 20 percent of the votes. A success that the party hopes to use to make demands when Parliament is to be formed and leaders appointed for EU top positions.
Sven Giegold emphasizes that he does not speak for the entire Green Party group in the European Parliament, but he nevertheless leads the dominant power of that group.
When it comes to climate measures, he wants to see higher emissions charges. It can be in the form of energy taxes or by expanding the EU’s emissions trading system, ETS, so that more sectors are covered as car and air transport – today ETS comprises about 45 percent of total emissions in the EU.
Giegold also wants all EU legislation to be climate tested.
Some legislative decisions today undergo a so-called subsidiarity test, a check that the decision is to be taken at EU level and not at national or more local level.
Similarly, one should make compulsory climate control think Giegold, so that all decisions go hand in hand with the EU’s climate goals.
These are actions that he and the green group may require when EU top posts are to be distributed. Almost at hand, the election of a new chairman of the EU Commission must be supported by a majority of the members of the European Parliament.
Among the main candidates for the post are the German Christian Democrat Manfred Weber and the Dutch Social Democrat Frans Timmermans.
“The carpenter’s closest to the green group is purely ideological, but that does not mean that he will receive the support of the group,” says Sven Giegold.