People looking to find employment and entrepreneurs alike are struggling due to crushing government environmental regulations and taxes.
Sunday, June 9, 2019, Bill Wirtz Foundation for Economic Education
In a piece for FEE back in October, I explained the rise in support for environmentalist parties.
Greens are present in 8 out of 16 German state governments, and they doubled their seats in the largest state—Bavaria—just over a week ago. On the same weekend, Greens in Luxembourg went from their previous 10 percent to 15 percent, prolonging their participation in government. In 2015 and 2016, Raimonds Vējonis (Latvia) and Alexander Van der Bellen (Austria) became Europe’s first two Green heads of state.
It turns out that this trend is continuing, as the Greens have increased their power in the European Parliament. Following the elections of May 23-26, the Greens jumped from 52 seats to 69. Most of this jump was due to increased voter support in countries such as Germany, France, or Finland.
Much of this is likely to be credited to young voters and the phenomenon of Greta Thunberg. The 16-year-old Swedish climate change activist has rallied masses of young demonstrators pushing their governments for “climate action” and popularized the question of carbon emissions more than ever.
Unfortunately, Europe has already been very tough on industrial production, with countries simultaneously attempting to get rid of fossil fuels while also phasing out nuclear energy. The result: rising energy prices for consumers, uncertain energy imports from countries that are less concerned with environmentalism (i.e. Russia), and inefficient renewable energy subsidies. That people looking to find employment and entrepreneurs alike are struggling due to crushing government environmental regulations and taxes is seemingly of little concern to the ideologues pushing for these changes and the media landscape accepting their narratives unquestioned.
As Germany’s Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung confirms, for young German families electricity has never been as expensive as it is today. The European Commission states that Germany had the highest household electricity prices in Europe in 2017.