ECI stands for European Citizens Initiative. An initiative enables citizens from the European Union to call directly on the European Commission to propose a legal act or concrete demands in an area where the Member States have conferred powers onto the EU level. In our case we want the EU Parliament to prioritize every topic related to the climate crisis and to take actions on climate emergency. If our ECI manages to get 1 million signatures from citizens of the European Union, who are nationals of at least one quarter of the member states, (names of the people who form the committee), who form the Committee of this ECI, will present the initiative in front of the European Commission. The Commission will “ set out in a communication its legal and political conclusions on the citizens’ initiative, the action it intends to take, if any, and its reasons for taking or not taking that action.”
An ECI is the most direct way into the European politics. It is different than a petition as, if we manage to collect the 1 million signatures, the European Commission will be forced to take position and publish a communication and the European parliament will hold a public hearing on the topics. Furthermore, it is not only symbolic because it can become a law on a European wide scale.