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Ursula von der Leyen’s secret climate crusade – POLITICO

Given that pesticide legislation has already not been passed by Parliament, von der Leyen is only confirming a political reality. Meanwhile, the 2040 climate target has always been a goal after the election, and even the heat pump plan is likely to return.

“The goals for climate protection and nature conservation remain unchanged,” Commission spokesperson Eric Mamer said. The consultation of industry and farmers, in particular, led the Commission to “propose actions to ensure appropriate and simplified implementation of the European Green Deal”.

In April, von der Leyen signaled that his fight with the EPP over the Nature Restoration Act was also not over. In a letter to MEPs, leaked to POLITICO, she challenged her party, saying the Commission was “fully committed” to the “flagship proposal”.

If she wins a second term, she will be forced to reveal her true intentions early on, starting with the selection of a climate chief. Ribera, Spain’s socialist deputy prime minister, is pushing for a “super-commissioner” position to deal with all green issues: energy, climate and the environment. A long-time climate policy expert, Ribera is widely seen as eminently qualified for the role of climate commissioner, although the EPP may balk at the prospect.

By November, the bloc could also face the question of how to respond to Donald Trump’s second presidency. Whatever the EU does in this scenario will have to emphasize its own climate credentials, or risk global green commitments collapsing as US leadership evaporates.

For now, von der Leyen must maintain the EPP without alienating the other major left-wing groups she may need to win a parliamentary confirmation vote after the election. If Parliament were to shift sharply to the right, the Commission president does not rule out working with far-right parties to adopt laws, provided they do not contravene her own political red lines. Although many far-right parties are hostile to the Green Deal, belief in the urgency of climate change is not one of its criteria for working with them.

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