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Green Wave Podcast

The Green Wave podcast, showcasing in audio a selection of articles from the Green European Journal.

Covering progressive politics and green ideas from a range of perspectives from across Europe and beyond. Available for you to listen wherever and whenever you want.

Listen below, find us on your podcast apps, on SoundCloudiTunes, Spotify, Stitcher or Google Play, or access the RSS feed directly.

Stay tuned for new episodes and themes.


Natalie Bennett discusses the hard-won gains and shortcomings of the British legislation banning micro-plastics in cosmetics, the deep-rooted place plastic holds in British lifestyle, and the path to a society no longer needlessly reliant on plastic.

Written by Natalie Bennett and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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A fixation with growth in economics has seen GDP increase in proportion to environmental damage. As planetary limits draw ever closer and are even being surpassed, such a model cannot be sustained. Riccardo Mastini explains how a job guarantee could open up the way to a sustainable economic model.

Written by Riccardo Mastini and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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With tens of thousands of Estonian workers commuting between Tallinn and Helsinki, we look at a snapshot of Estonia’s ongoing struggle with brain drain.

Written by Silja Kudel and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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The Western healthcare system is facing an imminent upheaval caused by an ageing population, increase in the chronically ill, technological advances and a shortage of caregivers. Automation of medical work using artificial intelligence is one possible solution to this. But if the patient is the sole manager of their health, what happens to the other workers and stakeholders in the healthcare sector?

Written by Nathalie Schirvel and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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While data signals that the peak of the refugee crisis is over, thanks mostly to shady deals with third countries and developments in Syria, EU governments continue to treat migration with heightened emotion and political grandstanding. Edouard Gaudot reflects on Ivan Krastev’s latest book, After Europe, in which he declares that migration is now an “existential issue” for the EU.

Written by Edouard Gaudot and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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On May 25 2018, the people of Ireland voted overwhelmingly in favour of repealing the 8th amendment of the Irish Constitution – the article that had hitherto made it effectively impossible to legislate for abortion even in the most extreme of circumstances. This attests to a deep transformation within Irish society that has taken place over just a few decades.

Written by Beatrice White and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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Having been dependent first on coal and then on oil, European society, as it transitions to renewables, will in future be constrained by the availability of rare metals. The central role of rare metals in green and digital technology has important consequences not only for the environmental transition but also for geopolitics and industrial policy in Europe and across the world.

Written by Guillaume Pitron and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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In 1997, a declining industrial city in northern Spain, submerged in a deep economic, environmental, and social crisis, opened an innovative branch of the Guggenheim museum. Today, Bilbao boasts an urban landscape that is both considerate of its citizens and attractive to visitors. As a result, the ‘Guggenheim effect’ became a worldwide phenomenon, showing that a large-scale architectural project could transform a city. Or could it?

Written by Cosme del Olmo and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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With foreign owners leaving the media market, Central and Eastern European oligarchs are buying whatever they can get their hands on. The region is a prime example of how vested interests can create a quasi-monopoly on media and information, increasingly cementing control and influence over opinions. Populist governments and other vested interests are taking over large media holdings. Public service broadcasters are used as mouthpieces of the state, while independent news outlets are struggling to make ends meet and going under.

Written by Krisztian Simon and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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Across London and other European cities, a new way of living is taking root: property guardianship. Blocks of flats, police stations, social housing, libraries, offices, warehouses, schools – buildings that have been taken out of use – are occupied by a new anti-squatting measure: people who guard property by living in it. Whilst ostensibly a win-win situation for everyone, this industry is a symptom of the desperate state of urban housing and ultimately reinforces the factors that caused it, as well as normalising lower conditions and precarity.

Written by Julia Toynbee Lagoutte and Samir Jeraj and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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A searing diatribe by a journalist bemoaning the flaws of the ‘Capital of Europe’ sparked much debate on the state of Brussels today, around both its aesthetic attributes as well as the processes going on beneath its surface. Closer inspection reveals how the tangles and disjointedness of the city’s politics are mirrored in its public face, yet some ‘Bruxellois’ – whether by origin or by choice – argue that the city does not deserve its bad press.

Written by Edouard Gaudot and Evelyne Huytebroeck and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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Environmental taxes advocated by Green parties such as road pricing give rise to social resistance and populist criticism. There is, however, a response to the mistrust of green taxation. Richard Wouters explores the potential of the environmental dividend to drum up support for much needed but controversial green taxes.

Written by Richard Wouters and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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Attention in Brussels is focused once again on the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). The cycle of reforms that is now underway could see further adjustments of the CAP for the post-2020 period. The success of these reforms tends to be gauged in political terms: a ‘successful’ CAP reform is one in which a policy created 60 years ago is ingeniously reframed, rebalanced, and rebranded to meet changing expectations and spread dissatisfaction more or less equally.

Written by Olivier De Schutter and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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The IPCC report published in October 2018 made international headlines for underlining that countries have as little as 12 years to take steps to avoid the worst effects of climate change. Bert Metz, fellow at the European Climate Foundation, explains what the report means for the planet, the economy, and for Europe.

Written by Bert Metz and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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Neonicotinoids are the most popular – and the most poisonous – insecticides in the world. The large-scale collateral damage caused by neonicotinoids, or ‘neonics’ in short, on our ecosystem has been suppressed for years by industry spin doctors and intensive lobbying by producers of this agricultural poison. Although the recent EU ban on neonics is an important step it is not yet enough to turn the tide, argues Jeroen van der Sluijs.

Written by Jeroen van der Sluijs and read by Julia Lagoutte.

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We are drowning in plastic. It is hard to exaggerate the scale and urgency of the challenge facing the world, to substantially reduce our plastics use, and to ensure we reuse and recycle as much and as quickly as possible. In the run up to the publication of the European Commission’s much anticipated plastics strategy in January 2018, highly active corporate lobbyists were granted the lion’s share of access to Commission officials.

Written by Vicky Cann.

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The rise of populism across Europe and beyond has been widely acknowledged. In its right-wing form, the Alternative für Deutschland in Germany, the Rassemblement National in France and the UK Independence Party, for example, have all had significant electoral successes in recent years. Less noted, however, is the intriguing appearance of environmental themes within these parties’ manifestos.

Written by Amanda Machin and Oliver Wagener.

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The European transport sector needs a transformation if it is to support a green Europe in 2049. Solutions to transport’s most pressing environmental problems are emerging, but will bring their own challenges. Sustainable mobility experts Ian Skinner, Huib van Essen, and Anouk van Grinsven analyse what the opportunities and dilemmas mean for how we live and move, and outline how policy-makers can best respond.

Written by Anouk van Grinsven, Huib van Essen and Ian Skinner.

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Climate change and digitalisation will shape the 21st century, but society’s ability to determine the future should not be downplayed. Christophe Degryse, head of the Foresight Unit at the European Trade Union Institute, explores how social movements such as trade unions, business groups, and political parties adapt to these trends will be pivotal in constructing the social model of the decades to come.

Written by Christophe Degryse.

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In a context where acts of terrorism and violence provide justification for increasingly intrusive interference with the rights of citizens, what international frameworks exist to limit government surveillance and how effective are they? What can be done at the EU level to complement those safeguarding mechanisms?

Written by Estelle Massé & Fanny Hidvegi.

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Are borders really the normal state of affairs? A critical and historical approach suggests this is in fact a very recent development. By recognising this, we can start to open our minds to imagine new ways of including ‘Others’ within our own borders. A radical futuristic plan for a borderless Europe.

Written by Robert Menasse & Ulrike Guérot.

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Many EU policy-makers see precision agriculture as the answer to the question of food sustainability, but agroecology offers a genuinely sustainable solution already at hand.

Written by Francesco Ajena.

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