Yannick Jadot, ecology in the clothes of power

January 19, 2022. Yannick Jadot is in the gallery of the European Parliament in Strasbourg. His royal blue suit blends into the dressing of the hemicycle. For six minutes, the environmentalist candidate curbs the President of the Republic, who has come to inaugurate the French presidency of the Council of the European Union: “You will go down in history as the president of climate inaction. » A piece of bravery, deemed out of place by some, but which will remain for the environmentalist family as “the highlightof this presidential campaign ». “That day, Yannick appeared determined, powerful. He should have multiplied this kind of stuntsbelieves the former candidate of the Greens in 2002, Noël Mamère. But he is a boy who is not looking for a fight. He doesn’t like it. It’s his temper. »

His reputation as a pragmatic ecologist is tenacious. Almost likely to forget his past as a young activist capable of punching operations for Greenpeace in the 2000s. “A pure media construction” intended to exacerbate the opposition with the radicalism lent to her rival in the environmental primary, Sandrine Rousseau, sweep the members of the Jadot clan. However, “the ecology of solutions” carried by the candidate is not devoid of pragmatism. This 54-year-old Picard hears “putting ecology at the heart of power”. His strategy: to offer environmentalists, long seen as Cassandras, the respectability required to access business.

A detail of clothing testifies to the conversion of the Greens to the great republican rituals. Yannick Jadot now wears a tie. Since the Russian invasion of February 24, the candidate also wears a pin in the colors of Ukraine. As soon as the war broke out, the ecologist called for a total embargo on Russian hydrocarbons, trying to demonstrate that “peace and the climate are the same fight”.

“With Yannick, environmentalists are no longer relegated to the rank of testimonial candidates”, assures EELV MEP David Cormand, regretting that his family is capped at 6% of voting intentions. The candidate, for his part, takes shelter behind the poor score promised for the 2019 Europeans: his list had doubled the bet, with 13.5% of the vote. But the refrain is not enough to remove doubts about a campaign whose themes do not imprint, despite concrete measures: investment in renewable energies to phase out nuclear power within twenty-five years, the ISF climatic or the energy renovation of buildings.

In his quest for credibility, Yannick Jadot may have lost the momentum to get his clan on board. His campaign got bogged down in political squabbles familiar to his party, notably with the soap opera Sandrine Rousseau or the Popular Primary this winter. “ Yannick was a prisoner of the outdated obsession with the union of the left”sighs the deputy national secretary of EELV, Sandra Regol.

Ultimate presidential effort, Yannick Jadot has acquired the conviction that ecofeminism and anti-racism are essential components of contemporary ecology. “When I say things to Yannick on these issues, he listens”assures Mélanie Vogel, spokesperson for the candidate and leading ecofeminist figure, before adding: “But it’s a long job. »


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