Jonathan Essex

Jonathan EssexClimate change and wider environmental destruction threatens our equality and democracy. A Green Campaign for the European Elections must highlight how social justice and environmental sustainability are two sides of the same coin. This vision, combined with sufficient collective action, can and must transform our politics and radically change economics - for a better future and Europe.

I would apply my experience as a Green councillor (since 2010) and as SE Chair (since 2014) to this challenge, continuing Keith Taylor’s leadership of a strong team in Brussels and the region. I believe I have the humility and integrity, commitment and experience to be elected as an effective MEP. I have been a Green Party member since 2005. I currently serve as a Surrey County Councillor and Reigate and Banstead Borough Councillor. I previously served the Green Party nationally (as campaigns coordinator, on conferences committee, reviewing policy) and have stood in general and EU elections.

I have long campaigned for environmental and social justice (including through CND, CPRE, UKWIN and Greenpeace). I have helped start new campaigns (including #NoNewRunways and locally) and served as a Trustee for local charities (furniture reuse and local volunteering). My activism started leading a Friends of the Earth student group helping defeat the Durham bypass. I joined the Green Party after returning from working in Sudan, Vietnam and Bangladesh as a Chartered Engineer and Environmentalist where I experienced climate impacts and corruption first hand. I have had the privilege of leading a small team of green councillors in Surrey where we punch above our weight - securing budget amendments, motions and making a real difference locally.

I have extensive media experience, mostly as a councillor (print media, radio, some TV) and in general and European elections. I have spoken in many public meetings and rallies; including supporting Keith Taylor MEP at events on affordable housing, flooding, oil drilling, airport expansion (e.g. on how we can provide genuinely affordable housing and protect our countryside, against nuclear power, Trident, council cuts and austerity, biofuels and incineration – and on the fairer society and green jobs we must create instead, on hope and green politics and much more), and supported legal challenges.

In addition I have published and presented widely as a core member of Green House across the UK and EU (including at the Green European Foundation COP24 side-event) including on industrial strategy for a post-growth Britain on how dealing with climate change will re-localise the UK and EU economy and what Facing up to Climate Reality looks like (forthcoming).

We need a reformed and far Greener Europe. We must inspire and energise the UK in the face of tired politics, declaring a Climate Emergency, setting clear green lines to stop airport expansion and oil extraction, and realising sufficient alternatives with integrity, honesty and clarity. I would welcome the opportunity to serve as your Green MEP. Together we must Take Back Hope.

See also redhillgreens.org.uk/ and jonathanessex.net/. Please follow me at @_JonathanEssex.


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