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‘Green Tsunami’ Washes Over France’s City Halls

The Green Party scored big in municipal elections, and new mayors have ambitious plans. Now comes the hard part.

Women walk past a mural in Marseille, France, on April 25. The Green Party has taken power in the southern port city as part of a coalition.

Women walk past a mural in Marseille, France, on April 25. The Green Party has taken power in the southern port city as part of a coalition.

Photographer: Anne-Christine Poujoulat/AFP

Municipal elections in France just yielded a string of victories for environmentalists, with several major cities swinging Green.

The unprecedented showing for Europe Écologie Les Verts, a once minor political party, means Green mayors will take charge in Marseille, Lyon, Bordeaux and Strasbourg. The party also came out on top in mid-sized cities such as Tours, Besancon, Annecy and Poitiers, while retaining control of Grenoble.