Greens up pressure on Macron after French election wins

PARIS (AFP) – France’s Greens urged President Emmanuel Macron yesterday to prioritise the environment as they savoured big wins in municipal elections, seen by many as a rebuke of the centrist leader’s top-down governing style during his first three years in office.

Yannick Jadot, Head of the Europe Ecology – Green Party (EELV), said the results proved that Macron had been “in denial” over growing public demand for ambitious measures to fight climate change.

Jadot told Europe 1 radio the EELV would not join Macron’s government as part of a widely expected cabinet shake-up, saying instead the president should enact “as he promised” 149 measures proposed this month by his Citizen’s Convention on Climate.

Macron met the council’s members yesterday when he planned a “first response” to their proposals, which included reducing motorway speed limits and making “ecocide” a crime.

Voters handed the Greens control of key cities including Lyon, Bordeaux and Strasbourg, while Socialist Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo was re-elected after forming an alliance with the EELV.

Traditional rightwing and Socialist parties managed respectable showings, with the rightwing Republicans winning in more than half of cities with more than 9,000 residents.