Environment is the main issue for voters in European elections
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Environment is the main issue for voters in European elections

© European Union, 2019
© European Union, 2019

A recent survey among potential voters to the European Parliament elections on 23 – 26 May shows that protecting the environment against climate change ranked first among their concerns, followed by improving the tax system and dealing with migration. The survey was conducted during March by Change.org, an internet platform which specialises on petitions for social change. The survey was sent to 5.2 million users in five countries – France, Germany Italy, Poland and Spain – and received 135,000 replies.

The respondents were asked to list up to three issues that they want the European institutions to focus on after the elections. Environment received 72% of the votes across all countries, followed by the need to build a fair economic and tax system (68%) and migration (38%).

The response rate differed widely by country, with 44% of the replies received from France. There the tax system ranked as the most crucial issue.

“The responses are consistent with the most important European campaigns on Change.org in the past few years such as the campaigns to ban disposable plastic bottles and to end food waste,” comments Paula Peters, its Vice-President for Europe.

Those who replied to the survey are more engaged than the average voter with 84 % of the respondents saying that they are planning on voting in the elections. The turnout in the European elections has been steadily decreasing and was only 43% in 2014.

Paula Peters adds, that “When sharing their reasons to vote, users refer to the increasingly important role that decisions at the EU level have in their lives, as well as their willingness to build a European Union that is more human and social and serves its citizens, and is not exclusively economic.”

The Brussels Times

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