The EESC Consumers and Environment Category has made significant contributions to the protection of consumer rights and the environment in Europe. It has championed topics such as the regulation of consumer over-indebtedness, planned obsolescence and the circular economy. Fair and just climate mitigation and adaptation must take centre stage of the Category's activities in the future as consumers and citizens will be key actors in the green transition.
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Conference '30 years defending European consumers', 1 October 2021
Statement by the Diversity Europe Group III
The new EU Strategy on Adaptation to Climate Change is a crucial step towards achieving climate neutrality and resilience by 2050. European civil society strongly supports the Commission's commitment to strengthening efforts on climate proofing, resilience building, prevention and preparedness. The floods occurring in Western Europe, just weeks after a record-breaking heatwave in the US and Canada, are fresh reminders of the pace of change.
EESC plenary debate on 7 July 2021
Europe and the world have to prepare for the unavoidable impacts of climate change. COVID-19 has made things more difficult, but it has also created an unprecedented opportunity: to use the EU recovery funds to revitalise the economy and at the same time ensure that the EU becomes climate-resilient and fully adapted, while achieving climate-neutrality.
On 22nd of April we celebrate the Earth Day to empower and expand the environmental movement. This year's emphasis is on supporting local communities, focusing on areas that are disproportionately affected by environmental issues.
In response to the Commission Communication Stepping up Europe's 2030 climate ambition, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) reaffirms that the Commission's decision to raise the EU's ambition on reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions to at least 55% below 1990 levels by 2030 is the right one. However, in its opinion Stepping up Europe's climate ambition, the EESC insists on increasing efforts to achieve the intermediate targets, speeding up the process and placing the European citizens at the centre of climate action. Failing this, the EU will be at risk of missing its climate-neutral goal by 2050.
To discuss ways to accelerate action on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) for a sustainable recovery, the EESC Section for Agriculture, Rural Development and the Environment held a debate on 15 December in connection with the Europe Sustainable Development Report 2020, published on 8 December. The report is a joint initiative by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP), in collaboration with the EESC.
On one of the most important weeks of the year for climate action, with the fifth anniversary of the Paris Agreement, the European Council on Climate, and the launching on 16 December of the Climate Pact by the European Commission, the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) calls upon ownership and empowerment of civil society as a precondition to success.