In Norway and Germany, the neoliberal and conservative governments were overthrown in recent federal elections. They were replaced by a strange mix of liberals, leftists and Greens. In Norway, Europe’s largest oil and gas producer, a new ruling coalition has emerged between the social democratic Labour Party and agrarian Centre Party. In Germany, Europe’s economic powerhouse and its largest energy consumer, Chancellor Angela Merkel has stepped down after nearly two decades in power, the Social Democratic Party of Germany (SPD) is now the largest party, and the Greens drew nearly 15% of the vote, gaining 51 seats in the Bundestag. In the wake record-setting rain and floodingThis summer, Germany will be hosting the following: near-record heatwavesIn the Nordic countries, climate change was a major concern of voters in recent German and Norwegian elections. What hope does it offer that each country and the European Union will take concrete steps to address the climate crisis with new coalitions at their disposal?
In this interview, TRNN contributor David Kattenburg speaks with Jule Könneke and Rafael Loss about the recent European elections and what opportunities they present for Germany and Norway’s new coalition governments to take serious action. Jule KönnekeFormer president of Polis180 in Berlin, a think tank on European and Foreign Affairs. She is also a researcher on climate diplomacy at the German NGO E3G. Rafael Loss is the coordinator for pan-European data projects at the European Council on Foreign Relations’ Re:shape Global Europe project; he is also a co-author of the policy brief “Europe’s Green Moment: How to Meet the Climate Change Challenge.”
David Kattenburg is a journalist and human rights advocate based in Breda (Netherlands).