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What to expect from the 2024 European Union Elections?

Climate Finance

In June, 400 million voters will have the opportunity to shape their future. EU citizens will be empowered to elect their representatives in the EU Parliament, an institution addressing key issues such as the EU budget, security, social matters, and of course climate policies.

What to expect from the 2024 European Union Elections?
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In June, 400 million voters will have the opportunity to shape their future. EU citizens will be empowered to elect their representatives in the EU Parliament, an institution addressing key issues such as the EU budget, security, social matters, and of course climate policies. The Parliament also has the crucial role of appointing the President of the European Commission. 

Voting polls suggest that there can be a political shift to the right within the newly elected parliament. Historically, far-right wing parties have prioritized political topics and social issues other than the fight against climate change. So, such a potential change could reduce the ambition of the EU institutional ambition regarding the environment. 

The stakes of this election are high, it is important to exercise our right to vote this June. The collective effort required to solve the current emergencies (global warming especially) is too significant. Nothing is going to happen by itself. Let's make informed decisions and collectively express what we care about. Let’s shape a sustainable European Union.

  • What are the EU 2024 elections? 
  • The politics of the European Parliament elections
  • What are the important topics for the new 2024 European Parliament? 
  • Why is voting at the 2024 Elections more important than ever?

What are the EU 2024 elections? 

The European Parliament elections, a reminder

Members of the EU Parliament are democratically elected every five years to represent the interests of EU citizens at the European level. Their responsibilities include deliberating and passing new legislation on issues such as poverty, climate change, and security. Also, they play a crucial role in approving the budget and monitoring its use. Furthermore, the parliament elects the President of the EU Commission and the appointment of its commissioners, so it plays a crucial role in the broad governance of the European Union.

The 2024 European Parliament elections

The upcoming European elections will take place from June 6th to June 9th, 2024. In these elections, the number of Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) elected from each political party is determined proportionally to the number of votes received. A total of 720 MEPs will be elected, which is 15 more compared to the previous elections in 2019.

The distribution of MEPs to be elected in each country for the 2024 European elections is as follows:

  • Germany: 96
  • France: 81
  • Italy: 76
  • Spain: 61
  • Poland: 53
  • Romania: 33
  • Netherlands: 31
  • Belgium: 22
  • Greece: 21
  • Czechia: 21
  • Sweden: 21
  • Portugal: 21
  • Hungary: 21
  • Austria: 20
  • Bulgaria: 17
  • Denmark: 15
  • Finland: 15
  • Slovakia: 15
  • Ireland: 14
  • Croatia: 12
  • Lithuania: 11
  • Slovenia: 9
  • Latvia: 9
  • Estonia: 7
  • Cyprus: 6
  • Luxembourg: 6
  • Malta: 6
Nuber of MEPs to be elected per member state

The allocation of MEPs to each EU country is determined before each election based on the principle of degressive proportionality. This means that each MEP from a larger country represents more people than an MEP from a smaller country. The minimum number of MEPs from any country is 6, while the maximum is 96.

The politics of the European Parliament elections

What are the political groups within the European parliament? 

Once they are elected, MEPs align with transnational political groups. These groups reflect values of separate national parties, and MEPs in turn join political groups based on these shared ideals. Each political group in the European Parliament consists of a minimum of 23 MEPs from at least 1/4 of EU countries. Currently, there are seven political groups in the European Parliament, aligning from left to right as follows:

  • The Left group in the European Parliament - GUE/NGL
  • Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament
  • Group of the Greens/European Free Alliance
  • Renew Europe Group
  • Group of the European People's Party (Christian Democrats)
  • European Conservatives and Reformists Group
  • Identity and Democracy Group

Each political group manages its own internal organization, and it appoints a chairperson, a bureau, and a secretariat. 

What is the current political domination in the European Parliament? 

Here's the breakdown of the percentage of seats held by each party:

  • European People's Party (EPP): 25.1%
  • Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats (S&D): 20.6%
  • Renew Europe (formerly ALDE): 14.3%
  • Identity and Democracy (ID): 9.2%
  • European Conservatives and Reformists (ECR): 9.1%
  • Non-Inscrits (NI): 5.8%
The current political representation at the EU Parliament

What are the important topics for the new 2024 European Parliament? 

What are the main subjects for the 2024 European Parliament?  

The newly elected officials will make decisions regarding the EU budget, for example in terms of support packages sent to Ukraine and the Gaza strip. Also, they will debate on new asylum and migration systems, and of course policies to address climate change. 

What is the climate agenda of the European Parliament from 2024? 

The climate ambition announcements for 2040 made in February 2024 by the European Commission were initial communications regarding the bloc’s environmental targets. These announcements are the foundation of the climate talks for the years to come. You can read more about the timeline and the precise climate topics that will be at the center of interest for the newly elected representatives in our article here. 

Why is voting at the 2024 Elections more important than ever?

What do the polls say regarding the EU Parliament election? 

The European Parliament has historically been a driving force for progressive EU policy making, especially when it comes to climate. The bloc has been acting to become the global leader in sustainability.

According to recent polls, notably one from the European Council on Foreign Relations, there is a possibility of more right-wing and far-right-wing parties to making substantial gains this summer. 

EU elections survey results 2024

Why is at stake at the 2024 EU elections?  

The EPP and the liberal Renew group can win more seats than what they currently have, according to the polls. When it comes to climate-related topics, we have heard from those two groups that environmental policies may not receive priority attention in the upcoming legislative period. 

The abovementioned survey recalls the voting on the EU's nature restoration law. The law in question mandates member states to restore at least 20% of the EU's land and seas by 2030, along with binding targets to restore 30% of degraded habitats by 2030, increasing to 60% by 2040 and 90% by 2050. In 2023, the EPP proposed rejecting the law. In turn, the EU parliament had to vote for or against keeping the climate-preserving regulation. 

The vote, held on July 12, 2023, resulted in a small majority of 12 votes in favor of keeping the climate law, with 324 votes to retain it and 312 in favor of rejecting it, (as proposed by the EPP).

However, according to the European Council on Foreign Relations (ECFR) estimations, in a post-2024 election scenario aligned with the current polls, the environmental law would have been rejected with 393 votes against keeping it and 321 in favor of retaining it.

You have the power over the European climate decisions

As we approach the upcoming elections, with over 400 million eligible voters poised to participate, it is crucial to act now and defend our values. At Homaio, we advocate for more ambitious climate initiatives. In 2019, voter turnout stood at just over 50%, with lower-income Member States, paradoxically, exhibiting the lowest participation rates. For instance, Slovakia, Czechia, Slovenia, and Croatia reported turnout rates of 22.74%, 28.72%, 28.89%, and 29.85% respectively. Let's seize this opportunity to increase voter participation this time around. By exercising our right to vote, we can collectively defend our future and advocate for the action that we trust is meaningful. 

Sources:

https://www.europarl.europa.eu/election-results-2019/en/turnout/

https://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/BRIE/2022/698880/EPRS_BRI(2022)698880_EN.pdf

https://www.europarl.europa.eu/RegData/etudes/ATAG/2023/754620/EPRS_ATA(2023)754620_EN.pdf

https://www.delorscentre.eu/en/publications/detail/publication/on-the-road-to-the-2024-european-elections-institutional-timeline-and-missed-opportunities

https://ecfr.eu/publication/a-sharp-right-turn-a-forecast-for-the-2024-european-parliament-elections/

https://www.europarl.europa.eu/meps/en/search/table

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