To be the EU’s new climate chief, Hoekstra must reach out to the left
(EurActiv, 2 Oct 2023) Wopke Hoekstra, the Dutch nominee to become the EU’s new climate commissioner, will need backing from at least four political groups in the European Parliament if he wants to be confirmed for the job on Monday (2 October).
Hoekstra, a Christian democrat affiliated with the centre-right European People’s Party (EPP), was nominated after his predecessor, Frans Timmermans, a socialist, resigned to lead his party’s campaign for the Dutch general election alongside the Greens.
The hearing, scheduled from 18:30 to 21:30 in the Strasbourg premises of the European Parliament, will be a key political test for Hoekstra, who will need to convince a broad cross-party majority of MEPs to land the job.
The three-hour grilling will be followed by a closed-door meeting where coordinators of the Parliament’s political groups will evaluate Hoekstra’s suitability.
“If two-thirds of the coordinators express their support, Hoekstra becomes Commissioner,” explains Pascal Canfin, the chairman of the Parliament’s environment committee who will preside the hearing. The decision will be confirmed during a plenary vote on Thursday (5 October) involving all of the Parliament’s 705 MEPs.