The EESC issues between 160 and 190 opinions and information reports a year.
It also organises several annual initiatives and events with a focus on civil society and citizens’ participation such as the Civil Society Prize, the Civil Society Days, the Your Europe, Your Say youth plenary and the ECI Day.
The EESC brings together representatives from all areas of organised civil society, who give their independent advice on EU policies and legislation. The EESC's326 Members are organised into three groups: Employers, Workers and Various Interests.
The EESC has six sections, specialising in concrete topics of relevance to the citizens of the European Union, ranging from social to economic affairs, energy, environment, external relations or the internal market.
The ways that we consume today – at a high rate and along a take-make-dispose trajectory – are not sustainable in terms of planetary boundaries.
Although the EU has several good policy tools to build from, a comprehensive approach on sustainable consumption is still missing and should be at the heart of the European Green Deal.
The aim of the opinion is to develop recommendations for a comprehensive European policy for sustainable consumption, covering for example nutrition, mobility, housing and lifestyles, as part of the European Green Deal and as a complement to the circular economy package. It pays particular attention to the impact of such a policy on vulnerable populations and low-income households.
A strategy on sustainable consumption is necessary to provide a framework for Member States and for the private sector to address both household consumption and public sector consumption. The opinion highlights that such a policy should carefully balance the three dimensions of sustainability and thus contribute not only to SDG 12, but also to the achievement of all SDGs by 2030. Increasing the sustainability of consumption should not come at the expense of other societal objectives such as social justice, health, well-being and quality of life.