Man looking at distant windmills (reversed)

Your General Election 2017 Survival Guide

What you need to know

On 8 June, we all go to the polls to vote in the UK General Election. The next 5 years are going to be crucial for protecting the environment.

Our Election Survival Guide helps you navigate the swampy marshes of manifestos, never-ending news reports, and baffling political processes – think of it as your General Election 2017 oasis of calm.

The first and most important thing you can do is know what to ask candidates when they come knocking. Prepare yourself with our handy questions for candidates.

To help you put the environment on the agenda locally, we have a 3-step guide to writing to your local paper.

And if you want to look beyond 8 June, why not take your mind off it all with something else? Like stepping outside and spotting some bees as part of our Great British Bee Count.

We'll be adding more as the election approaches, so keep coming back.

Voter registration deadline: 22 May. Check you're registered today.

Without action the next 5 years could see:

premature deaths linked with air pollution in the UK
investment in renewables
hectares more green space lost, decreasing animal habitats

Our manifesto asks

Man installing solar panels
Climate & Energy

Urgently publish a plan to meet our Climate Change Act goals, and our international pledge to help keep global temperature rises under 1.5 degrees, make all electricity carbon free by 2030 and ban fracking.


Children looking across landscape
Nature Laws & Brexit

Ensure all the environmental protections gained as part of the EU become UK law, and commit to a new law to make sure our countryside and wildlife gets better over time.

Child holding big flower
Food & Farming

Ensure farming subsidies are only used to help farmers to protect and improve the countryside and protect wildlife. Permanently ban the use of bee-harming neonicotinoid pesticides.

Boy eating an apple

End the public health crisis of illegal air pollution levels by 2018, phase out diesel vehicles by 2025 and aim to meet World Health Organisation air quality standards.

4 people holding reusable coffee cups

Cut food waste in half by 2030 and slash the plastic pollution of our seas and rivers by 2020.

Protestors supporting action on climate change
Rights & Justice

Ensure the public can hold politicians to account in court when the environment is harmed and protect the right of civil society to speak out. Give refuge to those fleeing the consequences of our climate chaos.

Questions for candidates

Asking prospective candidates questions is vital to ensure they understand what is important to you.

Here are 4 questions about the environment you can ask your candidates on the doorstep.


Dear candidate, will you:

  • make sure we keep and improve all the EU laws currently protecting our health and environment?
  • back a permanent ban on neonicotinoid pesticides that harm bees? 
  • back urgent action to meet our climate change targets; back renewable energy and support the banning of fracking?
  • commit to urgently end the illegal air pollution crisis and phase out diesel vehicles by 2025?

Take it further, and follow our simple guide to getting your questions read at hustings, and hold your candidates to account.

Don't let the environment be forgotten this election

Help get the message out on the environment: all parties must act.

Tweet out a message to your followers

Tweet on Clean Air

Tweet on Climate Change

Tweet on Bees

Retweet our election video

Go 1 step further: tweet at your candidates. Make sure the right people see your messages by adding in the twitter handles of your local candidates, or using the hashtag for your constituency. You can find your candidates' Twitter details on to add to your tweets.

Put the environment on the agenda

Writing to your local newspaper during an election helps set the agenda and debate in your area.

Candidates watch out for mentions of their constituencies to pick up on key issues, and you can get a wide audience of people to think about the environment.

Letters to newspapers are easy to submit, and we’ve made it even easier for you to write an effective letter.

Follow our 3-step guide to help put the environment on the agenda in your area.

Need a break from the election? Help protect bees today

You don't have to wait until June to make a difference. British bees need your help now.

Join the Great British Bee Count from 19 May - 30 June and discover more about our precious pollinators this summer with our free app.

Since 1900, the UK has lost 20 species of bee, and a further 35 are considered under threat of extinction. Our free app will help you identify and record different bees, and give you easy tips to help them thrive. The records you submit will also help experts learn more about how different species are faring. 

Friends of the Earth is party politically impartial. Our aim is to ensure all parties have the strongest possible policies to protect the environment.