What else is a million in Europe?

Our Twitter account got its millionth follower in November 2018. And that got us thinking! We put together a series of ‘million-related’ facts about Europe, its values and its challenges.

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The oldest European

Our oldest known ancestor is one million years old! A team of international and European researchers found his fossilised remains in northern Spain, and used a revolutionary technique to determine his age by scanning one of his teeth.

Erasmus babies

27% of Erasmus students meet their long-term partner while on Erasmus. On this basis, we estimate that around one million babies have been born to Erasmus couples since 1987!

Luxembourg + Malta = Cologne

The population of Luxembourg and Malta combined amounts to one million (602,005 and 475,701), roughly equal to the population of Cologne in Germany.

A new generation of jobs

The renewable energy sector employed over 1 million people in Europe in 2014. The countries with the highest number of renewable energy jobs were Germany, France, the UK, Italy and Spain. With 324,000 jobs, wind energy was the main employer in the sector. The photovoltaic sector comes in second with 120,000 jobs, followed by the heat pumps and biofuels sectors, and finally biogas, small hydro, solar thermal and geothermal.

One million for democracy

Once one million signatures are gathered, European citizens are able to shape EU policy by calling on the European Commission to make a legislative proposal. This is called the European Citizens’ Initiative — a unique and innovative way for citizens to shape Europe in many different policy areas. Some initiatives that have successfully gained one million signatures are on the subject of drinking water, vivisection and pesticides.

Genome sequencing and science

In order to improve medical research and treatment, national authorities and researchers are encouraged to share data. Our initial target is to provide access to at least one million sequenced genomes in the European Union by 2022. Incidentally, one million is also the number of scientists and engineers in Italy!

What a million followers means… to us

Speaking to such a large audience is something that matters to us because we love what we do. It is a great challenge and responsibility. This is the Europe we will continue to fight for — together.

Written by

Official Medium account of @EU_Commission | Stories, posts & articles about our work. Our social media policy: https://ec.europa.eu/info/social-media-use

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