On 7 November, the Rural Pact Coordination Group (CG) convened for its second meeting since its inception. The CG plays a crucial role in developing strategies, coordinating actions, and ensuring effective implementation of the Rural Pact and brings together diverse stakeholders to address challenges and advance sustainable development in rural areas.
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Maroš Šefčovič, Executive Vice-President of the European Commission, chose the conference Empowering consumers on climate change, hosted by the Civil Society Organisations' Group of the European Economic and Social Committee on 11 October, for his first green dialogue. Mr Šefčovič first spoke about the green dialogues at last week's European Parliament Committee on the Environment, Public Health and Food Safety hearing confirming that he would be responsible for the European Green Deal.
Inaugural speech at the conference on 'Empowering consumers on climate change' organised by the Civil Society Organisations' Group on 11 October 2023
Séamus Boland, President of the Civil Society Organisations' Group
The SDG Summit was held on 18-19 September 2023 in New York with the aim to review the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Peter Schmidt, President of the NAT section, attended the summit and called on the EU to redouble efforts and accelerate the implementation of SDGs.
This year again, as the advisory body representing Europe's organized civil society, the EESC engaged in the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development (HLPF) to advocate for the voice of European citizens and promote sustainable development policies aligned with the EU's priorities.
The Civil Society Organisations' Group organised a photography exhibition in collaboration with the City of Culture of Galicia in the framework of its conference on EU food sovereignty: the role of agriculture, fisheries and consumers. The subject of the exhibition supported and complemented the Group's and the EESC's work on resilient and sustainable European food systems. The Group invited the Galician artist, Adrián Baúlde, to present parts of the series Mariscadoras.
Transforming societies from fossil-fuel based to circular and sustainable will require far-reaching changes in all sectors, including education. In an own-initiative opinion, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls for transformative education that empowers young people to contribute to the green transition.
The EESC held a conference on the future of European strategic autonomy. The event was organised jointly by three Committee bodies; the Digital Transition and Single Market Observatory, the Labour Market Observatory and the Sustainable Development Observatory. Policy-makers, experts from organised civil society and academia, as well as youth representatives, gathered to discuss how to overcome current and future obstacles to a self-sufficient EU in times of great geopolitical tensions and multiple crises.
In two newly adopted opinions, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) gives updated views on the Commission's Annual Sustainable Growth Survey 2022, which outlines the upcoming economic and employment policy priorities for the EU, as well as on the Recommendations on euro area economic policy for 2022. The EESC calls for a balanced approach that does not jeopardise the EU's social and environmental goals.