On 15 October, the Consumers and Environment Category of the EESC held its public event on the topic 'New EU goals and policies for sustainable development - Joint perspective of consumers and environmentalists'.
The conference highlighted the position taken by the EESC in its opinion on the Reflection Paper "Towards a Sustainable Europe by 2030", which was due for adoption in September 2019. The event provided concrete and constructive recommendations to the new European Commission and the new European Parliament.
As in previous years, the EESC was present at the High Level Political Forum (HLPF), from Tuesday, 16 July, to Thursday, 18 July 2019. The HLPF is the United Nations central platform for follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Sustainable Development Goals.
On 16 September, the Diversity Europe Group held its Extraordinary meeting in Helsinki (Finland) - at the Auditorium (Annex Building of the Parliament).
The meeting entitled Boosting EU competitiveness – 3 pillars for sustainable growth will mainly focussed on bioeconomy and climate neutral Europe, digitalization and infrastructure in transport sector.
This public hearing will look at ways to implement the 17 SDGs by addressing social concerns in full synergy with environmental and economic ones, reducing social inequalities and more fairly distributing the burden of transformation towards a sustainable Europe.
The NAT Section will hold a debate on "Circular Economy Strategies and Roadmaps: Cooperation and Inclusion" at its meeting of 23rd May.
The adoption of the UN Sustainable Development Goals in 2015 represents a turning point in the way the international community has decided to tackle global issues by bringing together economic, environmental and social dimensions in an integrated manner. The economy should be an enabler for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. It is therefore time to reflect upon a possible transition to a new economic model, which allows both people and planet to thrive and prosper.
On 27 February, the NAT Section will debate the EU Reflection Paper and the way forward with representatives from the EU institutions and civil society stakeholders, with a view of providing input to the preparation of the EESC opinion on this topic.
The Civil Society Days 2019 will take place at a crucial moment for Europe, namely after the Sibiu Summit and the European elections and ahead of the constitution of the new European Parliament and European Commission.
Current pressures on our democratic systems are threatening fundamental values (respect for human rights, individual liberty, equality, the rule of law) and the civil society space within the European Union. The alarming consequence is an erosion of democracy and restricted civic space in several parts of the EU.
Against this backdrop and in consideration of the transformation processes the EU is facing, namely on economic, energy and ecological, social, and democratic and participatory level, this year's Civil Society Days will focus on two main pillars, Democracy and Sustainability, and will explore their links and interactions.
On 12 February, the Sustainable Development Observatory will hold a debate on the EU Reflection Paper on Sustainable Europe by 2030. It will then look at several national strategies and processes involving civil society actors.