Proposed future Commissioners lack environmental credentials

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WWF is concerned that most of the proposed EU Commissioners lack commitment or experience on climate and environment. Most Commissioner candidates have now been nominated by their Member States to form the 2019-2024 European Commission, but only a few of them have either held a relevant post in the past five years or have in recent times prominently stated their commitment to effectively raise the bar on climate action, nature protection and sustainability.

“To compensate for the weak green credentials of the vast majority of nominees, Commission President-elect von der Leyen must provide strong political leadership to ensure that her promised European Green Deal is delivered across all policy areas and meets the expectations of citizens across Europe,” said Tycho Vandermaesen, Head of Public Affairs at the WWF European Policy Office.

“The European Parliament should also thoroughly interview all nominees to ensure they demonstrate their commitment to tackling the twin climate and biodiversity crises, before approving the College of Commissioners.”

Specifically, WWF urges: 

(*) In their hearings, all proposed Commissioners should clearly state how their portfolio will, under their leadership, contribute to a climate-neutral Europe in which nature is fully protected and restored;

(*) During the parliamentary hearings, MEPs should take extremely seriously their responsibility to thoroughly vet Commissioners’ commitment and practical contribution to achieving a climate-neutral and sustainable Europe;

(*) President-elect von der Leyen should ensure that the European Green Deal, the first of her six headline ambitions, is led by a senior Vice-President who has the experience and authority to put the needed policies and laws in place to achieve climate neutrality and curtail the loss of biodiversity; 

(*) Individual Commissioners' mission letters should provide strong guidance laying out  the policy commitments of the incoming Commission and through the process of the hearings, the European Parliament should be able to make further improvements to the mandates of Commissioners;

(*) All Commissioners-designate should engage with civil society in the weeks and months ahead, as they form their plans around how to implement von der Leyen’s political agenda.



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