EU nature law survives conservative backlash in final Parliament vote

By Louise Guillot | 02/27/2024 12:20 PM EST

Members of the European Parliament narrowly voted to back contentious Green Deal legislation, inching it closer to the finish line.

A farmer sits atop a tractor during a protest outside the European Parliament offices.

A farmer sits atop a tractor during a protest outside the European Parliament offices Monday in Madrid, Spain. Bernat Armangue/AP

Right-wing groups in the European Parliament on Tuesday failed to gather enough votes to reject the EU’s nature restoration law — marking the end of a monthslong campaign to kill the legislation.

In a tight plenary vote in Strasbourg, the European Conservatives and Reformists’ push to reject the legislative proposal did not pass, only gathering 273 votes in favor, with 345 against.
legislative proposal

A second vote, this time on the compromise deal reached on the nature restoration law between the Parliament and the Council of the EU in November, passed with 329 votes in favor, 275 against and 24 abstentions, effectively saving the legislation.
compromise deal


The regulation is a key part of the European Green Deal and sets targets for boosting the restoration of degraded natural areas by 2030. Following a campaign from the center-right European People’s Party in the last year, the final text was significantly weakened during negotiations between the EU institutions, giving countries more flexibility on how to implement the rules and stating that restoration measures should be prioritized in Natura 2000 protected sites.