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.
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Concrete proposals were handed to the European Commission's Executive Vice-President Frans Timmermans by high school students from all over Europe, who took part in a virtual Youth Summit on Climate organised by the European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) on 18-19 March 2021.
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.
The unprecedented mobilisation of civil society stakeholders at the 2015 COP21 in Paris which resulted in reaching a historic agreement on keeping a global temperature rise well below 2°C above pre-industrial levels, demonstrated that climate governance and climate action rely heavily on the grassroots approaches of local climate actors, such as trade unions, companies, cities, communities.
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.
Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it will be the focus of his Presidency
With the start of the 2020-2025 term of office of the EESC, Séamus Boland takes over the Presidency of the its Diversity Europe Group. Members confirmed his new role for the next two and a half years during the first group meeting of the new term held today, 27 October. Mr Boland's Presidency will focus on the topic of "Poverty and the role of civil society organisations in combatting it".
Since the signing of the Kyoto Protocol, various jurisdictions throughout the world have implemented Emissions Trading Systems (ETSs). The EU ETS is the largest and oldest one and it is going to be overhauled in line with the EU’s 2030 Climate and Energy Policy Framework. In an opinion adopted at its September plenary session, the EESC provides an overview of the EU ETS and of other ETSs globally and outlines approaches to regulate trade in this new deal of carbon markets.
The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) has adopted the opinion 2030 Biodiversity Strategy during its September Plenary session, following the European Commission's communication on the EU Biodiversity Strategy for 2030 - Bringing nature back into our lives.