Naturally, the main focus of the debate was Green ways out of the crisis and how we want to bring an end to uneccessary austerity. All of the Contenders agreed that austerity does and will not solve the crisis and that it was time to impliment new policies. Instead of the “absolutely immoral impositions by the Troika,” the only way forward must be through Green investments. Energy transition was a specific focus of the debate - Contenders were clear that it is a sector where Green investments can create employment and have a positive impact on national economies, as well as the environment.
Contenders also spoke strongly about the threat posed by drilling for oil in the Aegean. Proposals being discussed in Greece would seriously affect the area, which hugely benefits from tourists who want to experience its famous natural beauty. Contenders agreed that Greeks must mobilise against these plans on a local level, with support at a European level by the Contenders and Green MEPs.
The final portion of the debate asked how can we reclaim European democracy – an issue that Contenders also focused on in their closing statements. Ska Keller called upon people to “go out and change Europe. Let’s do this together, lets vote Green!” José Bové highlighted that “we need to have a dream for tomorrow, because we need the dream to change the world!” Rebecca Harms echoed their sentiments: “the Europe I stand for is a Europe of fraternité, solidarité and écologie.”
The next debate takes place in Cologne in Germany at 11h00 CET on Sunday, December 1. As always, there will be a live stream on our website!
If you want to find out more about our contenders, visit our website. Remember, you decide Europe!