CC-BY-4.0: © European Union 2019 – Source: EP

5 things we’ve learnt about the ‘green wave’ election

After a long night of election results from across the EU, META looks at five things we’re learnt about how Europe voted.

1. Greens did well, in some places really well

From early in the evening it was clear that green parties had surged in Ireland and Germany.

Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar had already taken to Twitter on Saturday to say “we’ve got that message”.

Angela Merkel now faces the similar pressure as the Green party came second in Germany.

Projected to take 21 seats ‘die Grüne’ are set to be the second biggest German party in the new European Parliament. Source: ZDF

The latest projections show the Greens/EFA group heading toward 75 seats in the new Parliament. That’s 50% more than the 50 seats they’ve held since 2014.

Green parties won more seats than last time round in ten countries: Germany, France, the UK, the Netherlands, Portugal, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, Lithuania and Ireland.

2. Pro-EU parties won the election

Despite small gains for nationalist and far-right parties, the overall picture was one of disappointment for anti-EU forces that had been hoping for big gains.

Once MEPs take their seats, pro-EU members will form a comfortable majority.

Projected EU Election Result (

EEB Secretary General Jeremy Wates said this was particularly important because “so many environmental problems need more action to be taken at the EU level”.

3. High turnout

For the first time ever turnout increased at this EU election, breaking the 50% mark for the first time in 20 years.

The European Parliament has been praised for its work to boost participation. Citizens’ groups across Europe have also worked hard to encourage their supporters to turnout at the election.

4. Young people made this the climate and environment election and the future is green

Polls in France, Germany and elsewhere show young people backed greens in their droves.

How under 30s voted in Germany. Source: 2DF/Forschunsgruppe Wahlen

With major school strikes taking place again last week, the voice of young people was clearly heard at this election.

5. The next Commission President is…

Oops, actually this is something we still *don’t* know!

EU leaders must now take account of the election, which has produced a progressive majority, before proposing a candidate to lead the next EU Commission.

EEB Secretary General Jeremy Wates warned against focusing on personality and stressed the importance of the developing a programme for the next five years:

“…it’s important to remember that whoever becomes Commission President will need to set out a programme that delivers not only for people but also for the natural world.”

You can read Wates’ full response to the election result on the EEB website.

‘We can really talk about a green wave’