Fit for 55 climate policies must ensure balance between fairness, emission reductions and competitiveness

The European Economic and Social Committee has called for a series of measures to ensure everyone is consulted on and benefits from the European Commission’s Fit for 55 proposals, which put the EU on track to cut carbon emissions by 55 % by 2030.

''Reaching the revised 2030 targets, as proposed in the Fit for 55 package, will unevenly impact regions and communities across Europe. It is therefore of utmost importance that adequate solidarity mechanisms are properly designed and adequately financed, towards a socially fair, competitive and green transition” said Cillian Lohan, Vice-President of the EESC.

The EESC, in its opinions (a total of 22 opinions), strongly supports the package as a necessary means to accelerate the energy transition and become climate neutral. However, it also stresses that policies must ensure the right balance between social fairness, emission reductions and competitiveness.

Common recommendations from the EESC:

  • While some sectors are heavily impacted by the proposed measures of the package, the transition to a green industry will generate possibilities for other sectors. The goal must be to ensure balanced policies that support those negatively affected by the climate transition.
  • Upskilling and reskilling programmes for both entrepreneurs and workers are needed in order to ensure access to the newest available technologies and digital and sustainable skills.
  • The involvement of civil society is key for transparency, for accountability and for establishing a balanced economic policy across the EU, where all interests are reconciled.
  • The social partners and relevant civil society organisations have an important role to play and must be involved in both the planning and implementation phases of the Fit for 55 package.

It is vital that the transition leaves no one behind, which means that citizens must be at the heart of the green transition. (mr)