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Green Party of England and Wales

The Green Party of England and Wales, Was formed in 1973 as the Ecology Party. Its aims were initially solely enviromental, but the party now has a broader platform of policies. It changed its name to the Green Party in the 1980s.

The party enjoyed a brief spell of success in the late 1980s. At the 1989 European Elections[?] the Green Party won 2 million votes, and recieved 15% of the overall vote. Mainstream political parties, alarmed by this success, adopted some "Green policies" in an attempt to counter the threat.

The party has not been able to repeat the successes it achived in the 1980s, nor has it been able to match the success of Green parties some other parts of Western Europe, Britain's first-past-the-post electoral system has often been blamed for this. The Scottish wing of the party, split to form the Scottish Green Party in 1996, and the English and Welsh wing of the party adopted the current name. The party has achived some localised success, as is outlined below.

The Green Party has not yet succeeded in returning Members of Parliament - which must win under first-past-the-post - but it has about 40 local Councillors elected. The recent introduction of proportional representation for European elections means that it has two elected Members of the European Parliament (MEPs.) Also elected by proportional representation is the London Assembly. It has three Green Party members, out of 25. The Green Party of England and Wales has one unelected member of the unelected House of Lords, the Upper Chamber of Parliament. He is Lord Beaumont.

(These electoral seats were held at the time of writing: January 2003)

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