The European Green Deal and the Energy Crisis in the Czech Information Space

Kristína Šefčíková, Prague Security Studies Institute / 24 Jan 2023

The Prague Security Studies Institute (PSSI) monitored the Czech online debate about the European Green Deal, climate change, and energy-related issues from June to December 2022. The monitoring was part of a larger initiative of the International Republican Institute’s (IRI) Beacon Project, European Green Deal: Mapping perceptions in Central and Eastern Europe, which took place in five EU countries simultaneously. 

The goal of the monitoring was to examine in what context local actors discuss the Green Deal and energy-related topics, what were the dominant narratives, who were the leaders of the debate, and particularly if (and how) the topic became a target of disinformation campaigns. Besides mapping the general debate, part of our goal was also to explore how relevant stakeholders engage in strategic communication on the topic. The report concludes with policy recommendations for these efforts.  

Our research revealed a strongly negative public debate on the Green Deal, hijacked by domestic politics and economic issues, driven mainly by the right-wing, national-conservative, political opposition. These actors drew inaccurate causal relations between the Green Deal and the current energy and economic crisis. Domestic politics dominated the debate, and the Green Deal became a scapegoat, used as a tool for spreading anti-government and anti-EU narratives. A consistent and constructive debate on the actual content and goals of the Green Deal, or on climate change in general, is largely missing both in political messaging and the general online debate.