Katie Treadwell at the WWF European Policy Office says to successfully transition to a green and sustainable economy, the EU and its Member States must heed warning signs given by their constituents, such as at the Yellow Vests protest in France. They must ensure their approach to the transformation is ambitious, inclusive and facilitates a just and local transition. Just Transition policies are typically referred to in the context of coal phase-out, however the principles are equally relevant for the wider implementation of the switch to a sustainable economy. December’s Climate Change conference, COP24, saw innumerable diverse cries for a just transition. The concept, which refers to a fair and equitable transition to a clean, net zero-emissions energy system, was a key feature of over 25 side events at the conference, as well as a Presidency Declaration. What drives this sudden interest in the Just Transition is a growing understanding that unless it is just, and implemented in consultation with those affected, the transition will not happen without great difficulty, resistance and unrest. In an analysis by the International Trade Union Confederation of just three European countries, 2.5 million new jobs in the energy sector alone could be created over 5 years through a transition to the green economy. On the other hand, in spite of a net increase in employment, some regions will see net job losses and possible negative socioeconomic consequences – in the absence of a well-managed transition plan.
Energy Post 19th Feb 2019 read more »