As France’s cities go GreenJun 29th 2020SHORTLY AFTER he was elected president of France in 2017, Emmanuel Macron devised the slogan “Make our plane
SHORTLY AFTER he was elected president of France in 2017, Emmanuel Macron devised the slogan “Make our planet great again”. It was both a wry nod to Donald Trump, and a pledge to act as a green president. In office, Mr Macron announced the closure of 14 nuclear-power reactors, cancelled the construction of a controversial local airport in western France, passed a law to reduce waste and plastic, and set up a citizens’ assembly to combat climate change. During the covid-19 pandemic, his government banned all flights within France to cities that can be reached by fast TGV train in under two-and-a-half hours.
On June 28th voters at the second round of mayoral elections across France echoed this concern with a resounding green vote—but not for Mr Macron’s party, La République en Marche (LREM), which did disastrously. In a record result the Green party, known by its French initials EELV, captured a string of cities that have for decades been held by either the Socialists or the centre-right Republicans. They include Strasbourg, Lyon, Bordeaux, Poitiers, Besançon and Tours. In Marseille, which has a final vote yet to come, the Greens also came top. One of the only other big cities to change hands in an electoral grab was Perpignan, which fell to Louis Aliot of Marine Le Pen’s National Rally (formerly the National Front).
For a Green…